In Hamburg, ten young men have been on trial for allegedly raping a 15-year-old girl near a party in the city park since Tuesday. An eleventh defendant is accused of having provided assistance and having filmed parts of the events. The entire process is closed to the public.
Start of the trial for a shocking crime: On the night of September 19th to 20th, 2020, a 15-year-old girl was raped by a group of men in Hamburg’s city park. Since Tuesday, eleven defendants have been in front of the juvenile chamber of the district court on Sievekingplatz (Neustadt). Among other things, because of the heated public mood, the process takes place without an audience. Nevertheless, there are first details about the crime and the suspects – the youngest of them was only 16 years old at the time of the crime.
Little by little, the young defendants arrive, some of a slender build, others of a larger build, almost all wearing baseball caps and hoods, plus the masks required by the court – their faces are not recognizable. Two of the men are twin brothers.
According to a Senate response to small inquiries from the CDU and AfD parliamentary groups, four of the accused are German, six have other nationalities, and one’s nationality is unclear. The court has appointed an interpreter for Arabic.
Several of them were initially considered witnesses before the investigation revealed that they are said to have belonged to the girl’s tormentors. Among other things, the hearing of countless, often drunk witnesses from the city park is the reason why the process is only now beginning.
The police came across the suspects, the youngest of whom was only 16 at the time of the crime, through video recordings of nearby subway stations. Later, during house searches, DNA samples were found that matched the semen traces from the crime scene.
Ten of the young men are accused of rape, the eleventh of filming the acts with a mobile phone (production of child pornography content and violation of the most personal sphere of life). One of the alleged rapists is also said to have taken pictures, but the videos never surfaced.
Each accused has two defense attorneys, plus the chamber around Chairwoman Anne Meier-Göring, public prosecutor’s office, expert and representative of youth welfare – room 300, the largest in the district court, is well filled with around 60 people. The schoolgirl is a joint plaintiff in the proceedings and will be represented by her lawyer at the start of the process.
Even before the indictment is read out, the victim’s defense attorneys and attorney make requests for a public committee. Only one defendant, it later became known, wished for the presence of the press and the public so that the public could get an idea of the “true circumstances”.
After a short deliberation, the court excludes spectators for the duration of the entire process: the victims and the accused are very young, and there are also allegations from the most intimate area. Meyer-Göring also addresses the “heated mood” in public, indicating that the pleadings and parts of the oral verdict will probably also not be public.
When the crime became public, there were calls for vigilantism on the Internet. Among other things, photos of the alleged “perpetrators” were published from social networks, even the address of one of the men. The employer of one of the young people was also contacted.
Investigations are underway against the alleged participants in the online pillory. According to the public prosecutor’s office, the Hamburg police initiated 144 preliminary investigations. 79 of the procedures were handed over to the Attorney General’s Office. Some cases have been discontinued, also because the accused are so young that they are not considered criminally responsible.
This is the basis of the process: According to the public prosecutor, the heavily intoxicated schoolgirl met one of the defendants late in the evening near the fairground in the city park, who had spoken to her and then led her into a bush. Three other defendants were said to have stepped in there, and sexual acts are said to have taken place, some of which also included violence against the 15-year-old.
One of the four men is said to have stolen the girl’s handbag. The student is said to have been led twice more from the fairground into a bush by other defendants, where sexual acts took place. The court wants to hear every Tuesday and Thursday until December. 41 days of negotiations are scheduled until December 20th.
The original to this article “Eleven men stand trial after gang rape in Hamburg city park” comes from Mopo.