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Russian Convicted Of Killing Air Controller In Zurich

The plane crash in southern Germany killed mainly citizens of Bashkortostan (CTK) 26 October 2005 -- A Swiss court in Zurich today found a Russian citizen guilty of "premeditated killing" in the death of an air traffic controller he said was responsible for a mid-air collision in which his family died.

The court sentenced Vitalii Kaloyev -- who lived in Russia's North Ossetia -- to eight years in prison. Swiss state prosecutor Ulrich Weder called the sentence "extremely mild" and said he may appeal. "The prosecution was asking for a 12-year prison sentence, but it
ended up being only an eight-year prison sentence. He was
charged with premeditated killing and not manslaughter, but I must say
the pronounced sentence is extremely mild and I will seriously consider
appealing this decision because I can't be satisfied with it."

Kaloyev lost his wife and two children when a cargo plane and a
Russian passenger jet collided in Swiss-controlled airspace on the southern border with Germany on 1 July 2002.

He was charged with killing Peter Nielsen on 24 February 2004.
Nielsen was the only air traffic controller on duty at the time of the accident.

Kaloyev was alleged to have paid a detective to find out Nielsen's
address and then confronted him at his home in Zurich, stabbing the Danish citizen to
death in front of his wife and three children.


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