Witness reveals motorcyclist ’swerved to avoid Diana’s crashed car’

November 14th, 2007 - 2:42 am ICT by admin  
On Oct 22, Grigori Rassinier told the inquest into the deaths of the princess and her boyfriend Dodi Al Fayed that he was driving through the Pont d’Alma tunnel in the opposite direction when he saw a motorcycle come out from smoke that filled the tunnel after the Mercedes crashed into a pillar.

The motorcycle “swerved as if it were avoiding the crashed car,” he said in a statement.

“The motor-cycle did not stop and took off like a shot. All I can say is it had a large yellow headlamp. I think there was only one person aboard. I think they were dressed in beige,” the Daily Express quoted Rassinier, as saying.

In a separate statement which Rassinier had given to lawyers for Dodi’s father Mohamed Al Fayed, he said that the motorbike, ridden by someone dressed in beige and with no passenger, seemed to be following the Mercedes closely but not so closely as to be involved in the accident.

“My impression was that it must have been following the Mercedes. It was to my mind very close behind the Mercedes but not so close as to actually have been caught up in the accident,” he said.

“All that I can say for certain is that I believe it continued on its way out of the tunnel rather than stopping in the tunnel,” he added.

Rassinier, whose statement was read to the jury, also said that he had caught a glimpse of a woman who proved to be Princess Diana as he passed the wrecked car.I noticed the rear right-hand passenger was a woman. She had her hand raised and was crushed against the front seat,” he said.

Another witness recalled seeing a man in a suit coolly walking out of the tunnel talking on a mobile phone moments after the crash.

Sarah Culpepper, who was on a weekend trip to Paris, was walking along the banks of the River Seine with a friend when she heard a “massive crash” in the underpass.

She ran to see what had happened, and looked over a wall overlooking the exit to see a dark stationary car and a man in his early 40s, with slightly receding hair and wearing a dark suit with a blue shirt and tie, leaving the tunnel.

“I jumped to the conclusion that someone was trying to get reception to call an ambulance,” she said.

Two investigations into the crash concluded that it was caused by driver Henri Paul’s reckless driving while being more than three times over the French drink-drive limit.

Mohamed Fayed, however, believes that Diana and his son were the targets of an assassination plot, masterminded by Prince Philip. (ANI)

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