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Russian court closes probe into last Tsar's murder

RIA Novosti

16:55 17/01/2011 MOSCOW, January 17 (RIA Novosti) - A criminal case into the deaths of Tsar Nicholas II and his family has been closed, the lawyer representing the Romanov family said on Friday.

Nicholas II, his wife, their four daughters and son, and several servants, were shot dead by the Bolsheviks in a basement in the Urals city of Yekaterinburg in the early hours of July 17, 1918.

The case into the murder of the Romanovs was first opened in 1993 and has been closed and reopened five times since. The last case was closed on the grounds that those who had committed the premeditated murders of the royal family were dead. The Basmanny District Court said there were no criminal offences committed against the royal family, as they were shot on behalf of the state.

The latest case assessed evidence and arguments presented by the grand duchess Maria Vladimirovna Romanov, one of the heirs of the imperial dynasty, and the Prosecutor General's Office, which had not been done previously.

Lawyer German Lukyanov said the Grand Duchess was requesting a copy of the case dismissal ruling from the Russian Investigative Committee.

The murdered Romanovs were canonized in 2000. Their remains were buried in Peter and Paul Cathedral in 1998.

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