German appears in court over intention to kill foreigners

German appears in court over intention to kill foreigners

Friday, June 7, 2019 9:24 pm


 A mentally ill man accused of carrying out a xenophobic car attack in north-western Germany on New Year’s Day appeared before court on Friday.

He, however, denied racist motivation, saying he could not remember the event.

Officials said that the 50-year-old man, who comes from Essen, knowingly steered the car he was driving into groups of New Year’s revellers with a clear intention to “kill foreigners.”

The attack left 14 injured, including one woman critically.

“The unemployed window cleaner has suffered from paranoid schizophrenia for years but always took his medicine.

“That’s why I don’t understand how this could have happened,’’ defence lawyer Andreas Renschler said the judges.

The man’s defence lawyer said his client was likely in a deluded state and assumed that the foreigners he had seen before him were about to carry out an attack.

“He wanted to prevent that. In fact, the accused was simply a very sick person,’’ Renschler said.

While the court is considering multiple attempts at murder, the public prosecutor’s office assumes that the man’s psychological condition means he will not be found criminally responsible and will therefore not be punished.

He faces an indefinite amount of time in psychiatric ward.


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