Prosecutors build criminal case against Tu-204 crash pilots

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Prosecutors in Russia have compiled a criminal case against the two pilots involved in the Tupolev Tu-204 approach crash in Moscow a year ago.

The aircraft was being operated by Aviastar-Tu when it came down in a forest while attempting to land at Domodedovo Airport on 22 March 2010.

Investigators determined that the pilots had pressed on with the approach in darkness and poor weather despite lack of experience in flying under the testing conditions and without being able to make visual contact.

The aircraft had been off course on the final approach and the crew failed to execute a go-around at the appropriate point.

Russia's interregional transport investigation division states that the 33-year-old captain and 36-year-old co-pilot are being charged with causing harm through breaching "a number" of air transport safety regulations. "Observance of these rules would have avoided the consequences," it adds.

The criminal case has been forwarded to Moscow court authorities.

Despite the Tu-204's being destroyed in the crash, there were no fatalities among the eight occupants of the twinjet.