Police: Berezovsky's Death 'Consistent With Hanging' | WAMU 88.5 - American University Radio

NPR : News

Filed Under:

Police: Berezovsky's Death 'Consistent With Hanging'

Boris Berezovsky, the exiled Russian tycoon whose body was found at his U.K. home over the weekend, died from hanging in an apparent suicide, British authorities now say.

"The results of the postmortem examination, carried out by a Home Office pathologist, have found the cause of death is consistent with hanging," the Thames Valley Police said in a statement Tuesday, adding that there were no signs of a violent struggle.

That conclusion may put to rest intense speculation that Berezovsky, 67, was the victim of a Kremlin-inspired assassination plot. Pathologists still have toxicology and histology tests to perform before making a final report.

The onetime billionaire and erstwhile power broker in Moscow was found dead on the floor of a bathroom at his home in Ascot on Saturday. Family and friends who found him said there was no sign of blood and that a scarf was lying next to his body, according to The Guardian.

He was instrumental in promoting Vladimir Putin to the Russian leadership, but after Putin became president, Berezovsky soured on him and sought to expose alleged misdeeds. The oligarch eventually left Russia and was granted asylum in Britain in 2003.

His death prompted immediate comparisons to the 2006 murder of Alexander Litvinenko, a former KGB officer who was friends with Berezovsky. Litvinenko, also a British emigre and vocal opponent of Putin, was poisoned with radioactive polonium.

But there were strong hints that Berezovsky may have been driven to take his own life after losing a multi-billion dollar legal dispute last year against fellow Russian oligarch Roman Abramovich. A news report last week, just days before his death, said Berezovsky was trying to sell his art collection to pay his creditors.

In an interview with Forbes' Russian edition less than 24 hours before his body was found, Berezovsky sounded a note of resignation, saying that "there is no point in my life. ... I'm 67 years old, and I don't know what I should do from now on."

Copyright 2013 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

WAMU 88.5

Art Beat With Lauren Landau, Oct. 1

Music from West Africa and photography from South East Asia come to the D.C. area.

NPR

From Kale To Pale Ale, A Love Of Bitter May Be In Your Genes

Researchers have found a gene that affects how strongly you experience bitter flavors. And those who aren't as sensitive eat about 200 more servings of vegetables per year.
WAMU 88.5

Legal Limbo No More? Bill To Go Before D.C. Council Lays Out Ridesharing Rules

Cab drivers in D.C. have long complained that their app-based, ridesharing competition are unregulated. Now D.C. Council member Mary Cheh is introducing a bill that would address these concerns.

NPR

'Ello' Aims For A Return To Ad-Free Social Networking

Ello is the viral social network of the moment. Ad-free, invitation-only and with the option of anonymity, it's generating tons of chatter as the latest alternative to Facebook.

Leave a Comment

Help keep the conversation civil. Please refer to our Terms of Use and Code of Conduct before posting your comments.