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Charges sought over $4m Ferrari, Lamborghini pile-up

  • This file picture taken on December 4, 2011 shows crashed Ferrari sports cars on the Chugoku highway in Shimonoseki in Yamaguchi prefecture, western Japan on December 4, 2011. AFP PHOTO / YOMIURI SHIMBUN

TOKYO: Police in Japan said Monday they want to charge 10 drivers over a $4 million, multi-car pileup involving eight Ferraris, one Lamborghini and a Mercedes-Benz.

The chain-reaction smash in December 2011 occurred when a convoy of expensive sports cars were on a freeway in Shimonoseki in western Japan, said Yamaguchi prefectural police official Shinji Tanaka.

The driver of the lead Ferrari lost control of his luxury ride and those behind the wheels of nine supercars and three other vehicles failed to apply their brakes in time.

One car driving on the opposite carriageway was also affected.

The Sports Nippon newspaper said around $4 million worth of damage was done.

Police sent the case against a 61-year-old man and nine others to prosecutors last Thursday on suspicion of violating traffic laws.

The final decision on whether to charge the drivers rests with prosecutors.

Police say 10 drivers, aged between 38 and 61, were exceeding the speed limit or not paying enough attention to the road, Tanaka said.

At the time of the accident, television showed footage of the badly crumpled cars -- most of them red -- some with airbags deployed after a smash that left six people hurt but killed no one.

"It's rare to see a chain-reaction accident like this involving expensive cars," said Tanaka.

"Some of the drivers told us they didn't really know the specifications of their cars or just how powerful their acceleration was."

The drivers were on their way to a supercar event in Hiroshima.

 
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