NEWS
06/11/2018 14:21 GMT

Leicester City FC Owner Had 'Minimal Opportunity' To Escape Helicopter Crash, Inquest Hears

The disaster happened just yards from the club's stadium.

PA
Early pictures from the scene showed the crashed helicopter ablaze 

Leicester City owner Vichai Srivaddhanaprabha had “minimal opportunity” to escape from his helicopter when it crashed just yards from the football club’s stadium, an inquest has heard.

The Thai billionaire and four other people died when the aircraft spun out of control and burst into flames on October 27.

Leicester Coroner’s Court was told all five victims had been scientifically identified and were seen on CCTV in the tunnel at the King Power Stadium shortly before the helicopter took off.

A police officer who gave evidence at the inquest said there was minimal opportunity for anybody else to have got in or out of the aircraft in the moments before the crash.

He confirmed those who had died were Srivaddhanaprabha, Nusara Suknamai, Kaveporn Punpare, Eric Swaffer and Izabela Lechowicz.

Thousands of tributes have been left outside the stadium after the news of the owner’s death.

PA Ready News UK
Leicester City owner Vichai Srivaddhanaprabha died in the helicopter crash, along with four others 

Giving evidence at the opening of the inquest, Detective Chief Superintendent David Sandall, of Leicestershire Police, said: “On Saturday October 27 there was a helicopter crash in the car park of the King Power StadIum.

“Evidence from independent witnesses is that the people in the helicopter at the time were Vichai Srivaddhanaprabha, Nusara Suknamai, Kaveporn Punpare, Eric Swaffer and Izabela Lechowicz.

“CCTV shows the five victims in the tunnel at Leicester City football ground.”

He continued: “Mobile phone footage showed the helicopter spinning out of control before descending to the crash site.

“There was minimal opportunity for anyone to get in or out of the helicopter at that time.”

Sandall added: “The investigation is ongoing into the cause of the crash.”

Adjourning the hearing, Leicester Coroner Catherine Mason said: “You have detailed to me that the final cause of death is pending subject to tests.

“Therefore I am not in a position to continue with the inquest at this time.”