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Total chief executive De Margerie killed in Moscow plane crash
Total, Europe's third largest oil company, confirmed the death of its 63-year-old boss known affectionately as the "Big Moustache" because of his distinctive facial hair and said its board would call an emergency meeting. While admired by the industry for expanding Total's activities around the world, he was also often in controversy for helming Total when it was embroiled in judicial woes including the UN "Oil-for-food" scandal. Just hours before the crash, De Margerie had met Russian Prime Minister Dmitry Medvedev at his country residence outside Moscow to discuss foreign investment in Russia, the Vedomosti business daily reported. In a statement confirming the tragedy, Total said De Margerie "Died just after 10 pm on October 20 in a private plane crash at Vnukovo Airport in Moscow, following a collision with a snow removal machine." "Four people were found dead at the scene of the accident, including three crew members and Christophe de Margerie." De Margerie had been chief executive of Total, Europe's third largest oil company after BP and Shell, since 2007, and spent his entire career there. De Margerie had taken over the helm of Total at a time when the company was embroiled in several legal woes. De Margerie admitted the claims had taken their toll on the company.

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