ROMANOV REMAINS: INVESTIGATION REOPENED! UPDATE: EXHUMATION HAS BEEN COMPLETED

The Romanov family
The Romanov family

Criminal investigation into the deaths of Russian Imperial  Family Romanov has been reopened

23 September, 2015.

Russian Investigative Committee reopened the criminal investigation of the deaths of the members of the Russian Imperial Family Romanov and their retainers.

This criminal case was initiated in 1993 following the discovery of a group burial in the vicinity of Ekaterinburg. After the work on the identification of the remains, the investigation came to the conclusion that they belong to the members of Romanov family shot on the night of 16/17 July, 1918: the former Russian Emperor Nicholas II (Nikolai Alexandrovich Romanov), Empress Alexandra Feodorovna Romanov, their children – the Grand Duchesses Olga Romanov, Tatiana Romanov and Anastasia Romanov, as well as members of their suite: imperial physician Evgeny Botkin, the maid Anna Demidova, the cook Ivan Kharitonov and footman Alexei Trupp. Then in 1998, the criminal case was dismissed due to the fact that all perpetrators were deceased.

On July 29, 2007 during archaeological excavations of the search for the remains of Tsarevich Alexei Romanov and Grand Duchess Maria Romanov, just south of where the discovery of nine remains of members of the Romanov family and their suite took place, the team found bone fragments and teeth of two people (a woman and a child) which exhibited signs of having been exposed to extremely high temperatures. To determine additional circumstances of the death and burial of Russian imperial family, the preliminary investigation was reopened due to this newly discovered evidence. Expert studies and other material from the criminal case established that the remains from this burial site belonged to the children of the former Russian Emperor Nicholas II: Alexei Romanov and Maria Romanov. After that it was again decided to discontinue the criminal proceedings.

In July of 2015, at the request of the Russian Orthodox Church, and in accordance with the instructions of the Prime Minister, an interdepartmental work team was created to oversee the issues related to the investigation and burial of the remains of Tsarevich Alexei and Grand Duchess Maria Romanov, whose remains are currently kept at the State Archives of the Russian Federation. The Work Team proposed additional identification studies of the remains, with material previously unavailable to the investigation: the remains of Empress Alexandra Feodorovna Romanov’s sister – Grand Duchess Elizabeth Feodorovna, which are located in the city of Jerusalem (State of Israel), and also the blood samples of Emperor Nicholas II’s grandfather – Emperor Alexander II, who was killed during a terrorist attack in 1881. His blood stains remained on his uniform. To do these additional studies, it will be necessary to exhume the remains of Emperor Nicholas II (Romanov) and Empress Alexandra Feodorovna Romanov which are currently interred at the Peter & Paul Cathedral in St Petersburg.

In addition, the task of the investigation will include additional study of archival materials discovered after 2011 and associated with the “White Guard” investigation conducted during the years 1918-1924. The leadership of the Investigative Committee made the decision to resume the preliminary investigation to do the above mentioned studies and investigations.

Update: Exhumation of remains of the Romanovs completed in St. Petersburg

Original Russian source

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