Russian tycoon Berezovsky died by hanging police say

LONDON: Former Russian oligarch Boris Berezovsky died because of hanging, police said, amid conspiracy theories about the tycoon’s sudden death at his home in Berkshire Saturday.

Police, putting the conspiracy theories behind, cited a post-mortem examination that says Berezovsky’s death was “consistent with hanging”.

However, more examination reports are to be carried out on the body, Thames Valley Police said, adding investigations at the property would continue for several days.

Berezovsky, 67, was found dead by an employee on a bathroom floor at his home.

The police had then issued a statement saying they would investigate “the unexplained death of (the) Russian national”.

Berezovsky having amassed fortune through selling Mercedes Benz in the 1990s and then through his ownership of oil and cable companies had many powerful enemies.

That had fuelled some rumours of foul play and conspiracy regarding his death.

The Guardian reported that Russian social media sources were saying he had killed himself, while some said it was a heart attack, and others remembered that Berezovsky left Russia in 2000, when Putin rose to power, claiming there was an assassination plot against him.

But authorities have ruled out any third party intervention saying there was no evidence of struggle before his death, and the examination results support claims that he killed himself.

Crime officers have been carrying out forensic examinations at the property and “these are expected to last several days”, Inspector Kevin Brown said.

“A cordon will remain in place until this work has been completed, to protect the scene.”

“While this important investigative work continues, we are unable to comment on any items found within the property.”

The BBC said he had survived numerous assassination attempts, including a bomb that decapitated his chauffeur.

In 2003, he was granted political asylum in Britain on the grounds that his life would be in danger in Russia.

He was married twice and had six children – two with each of his wives and two with a long-term partner.

The tycoon’s wealth is thought to have considerably diminished in recent years, leaving him struggling to pay debts in the wake of costly court cases.

In 2011, Berezovsky reportedly lost more than 100m in a divorce settlement, according to the BBC.

And, last year, he lost a 3 billion ($4.7bn) damages claim against Chelsea Football Club owner Roman Abramovich.

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