MOSCOW, May 28 (RAPSI) – Interim governor of Russia’s Kemerovo Region Sergey Tsivilev has appointed Lyudmila Masleyeva as the ombudsman for rights of victims in the tragic fire in Zimnyaya Vishnya (Winter Cherry) shopping mall that left 64 people dead, the official has stated during press-conference.

According to Tsivilev, this appointment does not imply cancellation of communications with regional officials but rather opens an additional channel for such communication. The interim governor added that Masleyeva would be able to tell him about any problems that may occur in her field of work.

The blaze in the mall occurred on March 25. According to investigators, 60 people including dozens of children were killed by fire. Initially it was reported that 64 people died.

A criminal case has been launched over involuntary manslaughter, violation of fire safety regulations that left more than two persons dead and provisions of services that don’t meet safety requirements.

Eight persons were charged and detained in the case. They are: Yulia Bogdanova, CEO of the Kemerovsky Confectionary Combine, a company owning the mall, Tanziliya Komkova, chief of the region’s State Construction Inspection, a formal head of the mall’s owner company Georgy Sobolev; the mall’s manager Nadezhda Suddenok; CEO of the company System Integrator that developed the fire safety system Igor Polozinenko; an employee of the company, who personally installed the fire alarm Alexander Nikitin, a guard who allegedly turned off the emergency notification system when he received a fire signal Sergey Antyushin and fire team commander Sergey Genin, who was charged with negligence.

On May 25, head of the Ministry of Emergencies’ department for Kemerovo Region Alexander Mamontov was arrested by law enforcement officers as part of the investigation into a criminal case.

According to the Committee, head of the Ministry’s directorate for city of Kemerovo Grigory Terentyev and other officials are also under investigation. Depending on their alleged actions, officials are suspected of criminal negligence and embezzlement.