1996 June 26 - July 30 NewSfile #1
Frank Williams faces manslaughter charge
1996 June 26
An Italian prosecutor has asked for Frank Williams, Formula
One team owner of Williams to be tried for alleged manslaughter
over the death of Ayrton Senna.
The source, who spoke only on the condition of anonymity,
said that the public prosecutor, Maurizio Passarini, was also
seeking trial on the same charge for other Williams team officials,
technical director Patrick Head and two senior officials of the
Imola race circuit.
Based in the city of Bologna, Passarini has submitted his
conclusions to an examining magistrate who must now decide whether
to bring formal charges and order a trial.
The prosecutor has asked for the indictment of both Frank
Williams and Patrick Head, the source said.
The request was expected to be considered July 20th approx.
The charge, if allowed to proceed will carry a maximum seven
year sentence if convicted.
The source said Passarini's recommendations were, in part
based on a experts' report that the steering column on Senna's
car was modified before the race and snapped as Ayrton Senna
went into Tamburello.
The Williams team have maintained that the steering column
was intact until the moment of impact.
Judicial officials in Bologna have confirmed that Passarini
has completed the investigations and has submitted his report
to the examining magistrate, but they have declined to discuss
As yet there has been no comment from the Williams teams'
The S Files
1996 July 30
It is reported that the 'black box' which holds the secrets
behind Ayrton Senna's death has been mysteriously destroyed.
Investigators who probed into the crash at Imola are adamant
the computer in his Williams car was removed after the accident
and then 'smashed with a hammer'!
Some of the Italian investigators are so convinced of a sinister
cover-up that they fear for their lives.
Metal expert Adolpho Melchionda was finally handed the 'black
box' a MONTH after the crash and is quoted as saying:
'It had been dismantled from behind the seat in Senna's car
and taken away. When it was eventually returned to me in the
Imola garage 30 days later, it was broken - it could no longer
be used - it had been smashed.
'The input and output plugs which could have been linked to
a computer, to give readings about the driver's reactions and
the workings of the car, were no longer there.
'It looked as though it had been smashed with a hammer. That
box could have told us everything about the driver's controls:
accelerator, brakes, revs etc. but it is now USELESS.
'Every expert on the investigating team KNOWS how the accident
happened but no one is talking.
'Some are afraid for their lives but I want the TRUTH to be
The S Files