Police investigate Russian critic′s ′unexplained′ death | News | DW | 23.03.2013
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Police investigate Russian critic's 'unexplained' death

Boris Berezovsky, a Russian business mogul and former Kremlin insider who later became one of President Vladimir Putin's strongest critics has died in London. Police say his death is "unexplained."

British police announced Saturday they have launched a full investigation into the "unexplained death" of 67-year-old Berezovsky.

An emergency medical team confirmed reports, saying they had been called to a home in Ascot, near London, on Saturday. The cause of death, they said, was unconfirmed.

"We were called at 3:18 p.m. (1518 GMT) today by a caller who was concerned about the welfare of a gentleman at an address in Ascot," a spokesperson for the South Central Ambulance Service, told the news agency AFP.

"We sent a number of ambulance officers and one ambulance to the address," the spokesperson said. "The man was confirmed deceased at the scene."

Berezovsky, a former Kremlin insider who later became a critic of Russian President Vladimir Putin was living in London, having been granted asylum.

Egor Schuppe, Berezovsky's son-in-law, told the broadcaster Russia Today that he had been depressed and failed to keep in contact with family and friends.

In December, Berezovsky lost a multimillion-pound legal battle with Chelsea Football Club owner Roman Abramovich. He was ordered by a court to pay 35 million pounds ($56 million, 43.1 million euros) in legal costs after losing a damages claim, the High Court in London said.

He had been convicted and jailed on embezzlement charges in absentia by Russian courts.

jlw/kms (Reuters, AFP, dpa)