There was no conspiracy to kill a wealthy British businessman who was killed in a car accident in Ukraine while celebrating his first wedding anniversary, a judge concluded.
Barry Pring, 47, was fatally injured on February 16, 2008 on the pavement outside a Kiev restaurant when he was hit by a car while waiting for a taxi.
The IT consultant had gone out to dinner with his wife Ganna Ziuzina, now known as Julianna Moore, to celebrate their first wedding anniversary.
After dinner, Ms. Moore tried to call a cab but was told it would not arrive for up to 40 minutes, so the couple went to a nearby street to try to stop a passing car, heard one Investigation.
They climbed over a guardrail and onto the hard shoulder before Mrs. Moore returned to the restaurant to fetch a glove she had left under the table.
Judge Paul Matthews described how a car with false license plates “was traveling at high speed” and then hit Mr. Pring on the unlit hard shoulder, causing fatal injuries.
The judge, who sat as chief medical examiner, came to a narrative conclusion after a five-day investigation at the Bristol Civil Justice Center.
He said: “Unfortunately, during an extensive police investigation in Ukraine, neither the vehicle nor the driver could be identified.
“Death has never been charged.
“Apart from the driver of the car, no other person was involved in Barry Pring’s death. In particular, there was no conspiracy to kill him. “
The investigation learned how Mr. Pring, originally from Devon, met Ms. Moore on an internet dating website and they were married in January 2007 in Ukraine.
Mr. Pring’s family told the investigation that Ms. Moore appeared “cold” and “not loving or caring” to her husband.
His mother Irene and brother Shaughan suspected an illegal game after his death and later accused Ms. Moore of organizing his murder.
They hired a private investigator in Ukraine who claimed the authorities had failed to properly investigate Mr. Pring’s death.
An investigation at Devon County Hall in January 2017 found that Mr Pring was unlawfully killed, but that was later overturned by the High Court, which ordered a new hearing.
Judge Matthews, who led the second investigation, said, “There is no direct evidence that such a conspiracy existed or that Julianna Moore was involved.
“Instead, the Pring family made a series of allegations based on circumstantial evidence that, taken together, suggest that Julianna Moore was criminally involved in organizing the death of her husband, Barry Pring, and was in fact guilty of his murder.”
The judge said allegations that Ms. Moore was “cold” with her husband or that he was “possessed and manipulated” when true did not prove that she murdered him.
Mr. Pring owned three properties in Greater London and one apartment in Kiev, but the judge described him as “not so wealthy” as they were mortgaged, as Ms. Moore knew.
Providing evidence to the investigation, Ms. Moore said her life would have been “much more financially more comfortable” if Mr. Pring had been alive, and denied any involvement in his death.
Mr Pring’s family had doubts about the choice of restaurant for the anniversary dinner next to an expressway, but the judge said it served traditional Ukrainian food, which they enjoyed.
He added that there was “no evidence” that Ms. Moore put drugs in Mr. Pring’s drinks that evening to incapacitate him.
Police could not determine that Ms. Moore had been on the phone shortly before her husband died, the judge said.
Mr. Pring’s family also asked why the couple tried to stop a car on a busy road, but Judge Matthews described that there was “clear evidence of the practice” in Kiev at the time.
The lane Mr. Pring and Mrs. Moore waited on led away from the capital, but there was an option to turn a car and go the other way.
Judge Matthews said, “The family says it is suspicious that Julianna Moore left Barry Pring on the shoulder, but that is explained by the glove found by a waitress under her table.”
Mr. Pring’s family told the investigation that Ms. Moore was “cold and tough” and “showed no emotion” while informing phone calls of his death.
The judge said, “If she was so cold and harsh, why did she repatriate Barry’s body at her own expense, as Barry’s family wanted, instead of just having him cremated there?”
He added that he believed Ms. Moore was “trying not to upset the family” during the phone calls.
Judge Matthews questioned the timing of Mr. Pring’s death as he and his wife were due to go on vacation within a few weeks.
He added, “If this was murder, it was a strange, risky, and awkward way of carrying it out.
“The driver couldn’t be certain he’d met Barry in a high-speed collision and if he did he would kill him.
“In my opinion, there are too many ducks to be lined up in a row for it to be a reasonable means of carrying out a murder plot.
“I’m not convinced that there was ever a conspiracy to kill Barry Pring, let alone that Julianna Moore was involved.”
The cause of Mr. Pring’s death was recorded as multiple injuries.