News / Europe

Spain Train Crash Driver Suspected of 'Reckless Homicide'

An injured man, identified by Spanish newspapers as the train's driver, Francisco Jose Garzon, is helped by a policeman after the crash near Santiago de Compostela, northwestern Spain, July 24, 2013.An injured man, identified by Spanish newspapers as the train's driver, Francisco Jose Garzon, is helped by a policeman after the crash near Santiago de Compostela, northwestern Spain, July 24, 2013.
x
An injured man, identified by Spanish newspapers as the train's driver, Francisco Jose Garzon, is helped by a policeman after the crash near Santiago de Compostela, northwestern Spain, July 24, 2013.
An injured man, identified by Spanish newspapers as the train's driver, Francisco Jose Garzon, is helped by a policeman after the crash near Santiago de Compostela, northwestern Spain, July 24, 2013.
VOA News
Police are holding the engineer of the Spanish train that derailed at high speed this week on suspicion of reckless homicide.
 
Interior Minister Jorge Fernández Díaz said Saturday there are "reasonable grounds" to believe that Francisco José Garzón Amo is responsible for the crash that killed 78 people. But, he said, a judge is the one who will determine that.
 
Garzón's train is believed to have been moving at more than 190 kilometers per hour - more than twice the 80 km/h limit on a stretch of track when it derailed on a curve outside the northwestern city of Santiago de Compostela Wednesday.
 
Spanish police initially said they were investigating the 52-year-old driver on suspicion of recklessness. Garzón was hospitalized after the crash but has been released from the hospital and detained by police in connection with the more serious charge of reckless homicide.
 
The driver is expected to appear before a judge on Sunday. Spanish law requires that a judge hear a suspect within 72 hours of arrest.
 
Spain's state train company, Renfe, says Garzón is a 30-year company veteran who has worked as an engineer for more than a decade.
 
Spanish media report the driver bragged about speeding online, and that he once posted on Facebook a picture of a speedometer showing a train traveling over 200km/h. The caption for the picture, which has been deleted from the Internet, quotes Garzón as saying, "I am on the edge. I can't go faster or else I will be fined." 
 
Spanish authorities have opened two investigations into the derailment - one by judicial authorities and another by the public works department. 
 
Security camera footage shows the train - traveling Wednesday night from Madrid to the port of Ferrol - slamming into a concrete wall at the side of the track, its first car violently overturning.
 
Authorities will learn more about what happened from the data recorded by the train's "black box" data recorder, which has been recovered.
 
The disaster - one of the deadliest train crashes in Spanish history - happened on the eve of an annual festival dedicated to Saint James, revered as a disciple of Jesus, whose remains are said to rest in Santiago's centuries-old cathedral.
 
The apostle's shrine is the destination of the famous El Camino de Santiago pilgrimage across the Pyrenees, which has been followed by Christians since the Middle Ages and has had a resurgence in popularity in recent decades.

You May Like

Captured IS Militants Explain Why They Fought

update Fighters from Turkey, Syria tell VOA Kurdish Service what drew them to extremism, jihad More

Security Experts Split on Kenyan Barrier Wall

Experts divided on whether initiative aiming to keep out al-Shabab militants is long-awaited solution or misguided effort More

Video Philippines Wants Tourists Spending Money at New Casinos

Officials say they hope to turn Manila into the next Macau, which has long been Asia’s gambling hub More

This forum has been closed.
Comments
     
There are no comments in this forum. Be first and add one

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
Liberia's Almost Last Ebola Patient Grateful but Still Grievingi
X
Benno Muchler
March 26, 2015 3:41 PM
Beatrice Yardolo was to make history as Liberia’s last Ebola patient. Liberians recently started counting down 42 days, the period that has to go by without a single new infection until the World Health Organization can declare a country Ebola-free. That countdown stopped on March 20 when there was another new case of Ebola, making Yardolo’s story a reminder that Ebola is far from over. Benno Muchler reports from Monrovia.
Video

Video Liberia's Almost Last Ebola Patient Grateful but Still Grieving

Beatrice Yardolo was to make history as Liberia’s last Ebola patient. Liberians recently started counting down 42 days, the period that has to go by without a single new infection until the World Health Organization can declare a country Ebola-free. That countdown stopped on March 20 when there was another new case of Ebola, making Yardolo’s story a reminder that Ebola is far from over. Benno Muchler reports from Monrovia.
Video

Video Cambodian Land Grabs Threaten Traditional Communities

Indigenous communities in Cambodia's Ratanakiri province say the government’s economic land concession policy is taking away their land and traditional way of life, making many fear that their identity will soon be lost. Local authorities, though, have denied this is the case. VOA's Say Mony went to investigate and filed this report, narrated by Colin Lovett.
Video

Video US, South Korea Conduct Joint Military Exercises

The Eighth U.S. Army Division and the Eighth Republic of Korea Mechanized Infantry Division put on a well orchestrated show of force for the media this week during their joint military training exercises in South Korea. VOA’s Seoul correspondent Brian Padden was there and reports the soldiers were well disciplined both in conducting a complex live fire exercise and in staying on message with the press.
Video

Video Space Program Status Disappoints 'Last Man on the Moon'

One of the films that drew big crowds last week at the annual South by Southwest festival in Austin, Texas, tells the story of the last human being to stand on the moon, U.S. astronaut Eugene Cernan. It has been 42 years since Cernan returned from the moon and he laments that no one else has gone there since. VOA’s Greg Flakus reports.
Video

Video Young Filmmakers Shine Spotlight on Giving Back

A group of student filmmakers from across the United States joined President Barack Obama at the White House this month for the second annual White House Student Film Festival. Fifteen short films were officially selected from more than 1,500 entries by students aged 6 through 18. The filmmakers and their families then joined the president and a group of celebrities for a screening of their films. VOA’s Julie Taboh reports.
Video

Video VOA Exclusive: Interview with Afghan President Ashraf Ghani

Afghan President Ashraf Ghani, during his first visit as president to Washington, gave a one-on-one interview with VOA Afghan Service reporter Said Suleiman Ashna, about his request for a change in U.S. troop levels, the threat from the Islamic State, and repairing relations with the United States and Pakistan. The interview was held at Blair House, late Sunday, in Pashto.
Video

Video California Science Center Tells Story of Dead Sea Scrolls

The ancient manuscripts were uncovered in the mid-20th century, and they are still yielding clues about life and religious beliefs in ancient Israel. As VOA's Mike O'Sullivan reports, an exhibit in Los Angeles shows how modern science is bringing the history of these ancient documents to life.
Video

Video Angelina Jolie Takes Another Bold Step

Hollywood actress and filmmaker Angelina Jolie has revealed she had her ovaries and fallopian tubes removed to lower her odds of getting cancer. Doctors say the huge publicity over her decision will help raise awareness about the importance of cancer screening. VOA’s George Putic has more

All About America

Circumventing Censorship

An Internet Primer for Healthy Web Habits

As surveillance and censoring technologies advance, so, too, do new tools for your computer or mobile device that help protect your privacy and break through Internet censorship.
More