- A relative of the man who piloted the helicopter flight that killed Kobe Bryant blames the accident victims, saying they knew about the risks and agreed to travel
- This came after Kobe's wife Vanessa sued the helicopter company for the crash and implicated the pilot in the suit
- Kobe and eight others died in the chopper crash while on their way to a basketball game
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A representative from the family of the helicopter pilot, Ara George Zobayan, who piloted the aircraft that crashed, killing nine people including Kobe Bryant, has blamed the occupants for the accident.
Briefly.co.za gathered that a relative of the pilot, who also died, claimed the families were ready to go that far knowing it was not safe.
According to TMZ, the defendant said the people travelling on that fateful morning knew about the risk and voluntarily agreed to travel.
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"Any injuries or damages to plaintiffs and/or their decedent were directly caused in full or in part by the negligence or fault of plaintiffs and/or their decedent, including their knowing and voluntary encounter with the risks involved," the statement said.
The statement added that they could not bear responsibility for the accident seeing that their negligence was a factor.
"This negligence was a substantial factor in causing their purported damages, for which this answering defendant bears no responsibility," it added.
This came just two months after Vanessa Bryant sued the company owning the helicopter in which Kobe and daughter Gigi were killed.
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Vanessa in her suit against Island Express, accused the company of allowing Kobe, Gigi, and seven others to fly in an unsafe aircraft.
According to court papers, the widow stated the company caused the deaths of the nine by ferrying them in a chopper that was not certified to fly in bad weather.
TMZ reported that Vanessa's lawsuit asserted the ill-fated chopper that crashed on January 26 was only allowed to fly under visual flight rules but the conditions on the day of the incident were not conducive for such flying.
Vanessa's suit also implicated the Island Express' pilot, Ara George Zobayan, who was flying at 180 miles per hour in heavy fog and a steep decline just moments before the crash in Calabasas, California.
According to Vanessa's accusations, the pilot slept on his job and failed to properly monitor and assess the weather before take-off, failed to get accurate weather data before the flight, failed to abort the flight when he noticed the cloudy condition and failed to maintain control of the helicopter.
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