[JURIST] Russia's top prosecutor has denied a move by a descendant of Russia's Tsar Nicholas II [Wikipedia profile] to have the Romanovs declared "political victims," Russia's RIA-Novosti reported Wednesday. Grand Duchess Maria Vladimirovna Romanov [Wikipedia profile], a Spanish resident, was attempting to obtain an order from the Russian Prosecutor General's Office [official website, in Russian] that the Romanov's 1918 execution [eyewitness account] was a political killing. The office took control of the case in May [JURIST report] after several Russian courts refused to declare the execution political. After conducting its own investigation, the prosecutor's office determined that the execution by revolutionary Bolsheviks was a premeditated murder and not performed following a legal court decision [press release, in Russian], but said that only a decision by a court or "extrajudicial body" can declare the Romanovs to be "political victims." RIA-Novosti reported that a lawyer for the family called the decision "illegal."
Nicholas II, the Tsarina Alexandra, their five children, and several household servants were executed without trial near Yekaterinburg in 1918. The royal family's remains were found in a mining pit in 1991, and reburied with honors [BBC report] at St. Petersburg in 1998. AP has more.