THE Senna Files


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 the contents.

As yet there has been no comment from the Williams teams' Italian lawyer.

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 KNOWN.'

The S Files