Italy Judge Releases Three Held in Jail Over Cable Car Disaster, One Under House Arrest

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A view shows the cabin's wreckage covered with a tarpaulin in Italy, last week.
A view shows the cabin's wreckage covered with a tarpaulin in Italy, last week. Credit: MIGUEL MEDINA - AFP

An Italian judge ruled late on Saturday that three men detained over a cable car crash that killed 14 people, including five Israelis in northern Italy could leave prison, with one being placed under house arrest, Italian media reported.

The chief prosecutor of the city of Verbania, Olimpia Bossi, confirmed the judge's ruling in comments made to reporters on RAI television.

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Last Sunday, the gondola on a cable way connecting the town of Stresa, on the shore of Lake Maggiore, to the nearby Mottarone Mountain, plunged to the ground, killing Amit Biran and Tal Peleg-Biran, an Israeli couple studying and working in Italy, alongside their two-year-old son Tom. Tal's grandparents Barbara and Itzhak Cohen, who had come to visit, were killed as well. The couple's five-year-old boy still remains in hospital.

Italian prosecutors have opened an investigation into suspected involuntary manslaughter and negligence.

On Wednesday police arrested the three men.

According to the daily La Stampa website, the judge on Saturday ruled there were no grounds for keeping the three men in jail since they could not run away and there was no risk of evidence being tampered with.