Experts identify Argentina chopper crash victims

 Argentine and French forensic experts have identified 10 people -- two Argentine and eight French nationals -- who died on March 9 when two helicopters crashed in the northern Argentine province of La Rioja, court officials told Spanish news agency Efe.

IANS| Updated: Mar 18, 2015, 14:46 PM IST

Buenos Aires: Argentine and French forensic experts have identified 10 people -- two Argentine and eight French nationals -- who died on March 9 when two helicopters crashed in the northern Argentine province of La Rioja, court officials told Spanish news agency Efe.

The team used an odontological method and DNA samples given by the French victims` families, Daniel Herrera Piedrabuena, the judge leading the investigation, told Efe on Tuesday.

The court will retain the victims` DNA samples to confirm the findings.

The bodies would be sent to Buenos Aires and from there to Paris once the forensic examination process is completed.

Among the victims were three top French athletes - champion sailor Florence Arthaud, former 2012 Olympic gold medalist swimmer Camille Muffat, and 2008 Olympic bronze medalist boxer Alexis Vastine.

The fatal accident occurred in Villa Castelli, a remote area in the foothills of the Andes, over 300 km from the provincial capital of La Rioja.

The cause of the accident is still unknown.

The two Argentine victims were the helicopters` pilots while the French victims were participants of a new reality show that was to be filmed in that area.