Princess Diana Killed in Car Crash

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PARIS: Princess Diana, her boyfriend and their chauffeur were killed late Saturday night when their car slammed into a concrete pillar while being pursued by paparazzi.

Six of the photographers and a driver have been detained by police for questioning. Reuters reports they could be charged with endangering lives and failing to assist persons in danger for taking pictures of the crash scene instead of helping the victims.

The incident occurred in a tunnel along the Seine River around midnight local time as the princess, 36, and her 42-year-old Egyptian boyfriend, Emad "Dodi" al-Fayed fled the photographers, who pursued on motorcycles. Their Mercedes Benz went out of control and was crushed in the ensuing accident. "The car had clearly done a lot of spinning and was facing in the opposite direction," said Scott MacLeod, of TIME's Paris Bureau.

The Princess of Wales was pronounced dead at the hospital at 4 a.m. local time after suffering massive internal injuries, according to a French Interior Ministry official who briefed reporters at Salpetriere Hospital. Fayed and the chauffeur were pronounced dead at the scene.

In an interview in the Parisian daily Le Monde Tuesday about the recently disclosed romance, the princess said she wished she could escape the "ferocious" British press by leaving England. But "I cannot," she said, "I have my sons." The two boys are currently with their father, Prince Charles. Diana was to be reunited with them on Sunday.

  • PEOPLE looks at Diana's life and times and her relationship with Dodi

  • Get the latest reports off the Reuters wire

  • PEOPLE Daily special report

  • Chat about the accident online

  • Look for the TIME magazine stories on Diana's life and her death in this spot Monday afternoon

  • TIME March 11, 1996 Cover Story: Diana's Fractured Fairy Tale

  • TIME Bulletin Board: Princess Di's Death