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Russian Authorities Detain Director of Collapsed Moscow Building


Russian authorities have detained the director of the market in eastern Moscow that collapsed Thursday killing at least 58 people.

Moscow prosecutor Anatoly Zuyev says police detained Mark Mishiyev on suspicion of negligence leading to deaths. The announcement came as Moscow Mayor Yuri Luzhkov put the latest death toll in the collapse as 61.

Rescue workers say they have given up hope of finding any more survivors under the rubble. But officials say they expect more victims' bodies will be uncovered as the rubble is cleared.

Authorities say they have ruled out terrorism. Investigators are considering criminal negligence, heavy snow, or a design flaw as possible causes for the disaster.

The building's roof caved in early Thursday before the market opened for business.

Prosecutors are questioning the market's architect, Nodar Kancheli, who also designed a building housing a large indoor water park whose roof collapsed in 2004 after days of heavy snow. Twenty-eight people were killed in that incident.

Authorities say they believe most of the victims of Thursday's market roof collapse are workers from Azerbaijan and other former Soviet republics who come to the Russian capital to find jobs.

The building was completed in 1974, and was one of the largest markets in Moscow.

Some information for this report was provided by AFP, AP and Reuters.

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