Possible confession in the Yeboah case

Possible confession in the Yeboah case

DThe murder trial against 51-year-old Peter S., which has been ongoing since November, was interrupted on Monday for negotiations on a deal in the event of a qualified confession. All those involved in the process took part in these talks, which were closed to the public. According to a court spokeswoman, the Federal Public Prosecutor’s Office and the co-prosecutor insisted that they would only agree to an agreement in the event of a comprehensive statement about the circumstances of the crime, the motivation of the accused and his connections to the right-wing extremist scene.

Timo Steppat

Correspondent for Hesse, Rhineland-Palatinate and Saarland based in Wiesbaden.

Since the accused was only 20 years old at the time of the crime more than 30 years ago, juvenile criminal law could also be applied. Due to his strong alcohol consumption, a reduced guilt would also be conceivable. Therefore, a possible sentence varies between around five years and life imprisonment.

At the end of last week, the court asked S.’s defense attorney whether, in his view, there was a need for a legal talk. After consultation with his client, the lawyer Guido Britz agreed. As the court later indicated, according to a series of testimonies, there is evidence that the accused committed the crime; however, there is still a long hearing of evidence that could be shortened by a confession.

Attack more than 30 years ago

The statements planned for this Tuesday were initially postponed; this included the admission of a scene representative with whom S. had been in contact for decades. The next hearing is not scheduled until after Easter, when the accused will state whether he will testify or not. Peter S. is said to have met friends from the right-wing extremist scene on the evening of September 18, 1991 and talked to them about the attacks on refugee homes in East Germany at the time. According to the indictment, the sentence “There should be something on fire here.”

While the others went home, S. is said to have set fire to an accommodation in Saarlouis during the night. 18 residents of the house were able to save themselves by jumping out of the window, two suffered serious injuries. Samuel Yeboah, who came from West Africa and lived in the attic, suffered from severe smoke inhalation, from which he died on the same day.

Shortly after the attack, S., who was known to the authorities as a right-wing extremist, was interrogated. However, the investigation was discontinued at that time. It was not until 2019 that a woman turned herself in to police saying a man had confessed to her at a barbecue many years earlier. Reports about “cold cases” in Saarland reminded her of the conversation, and she is said to have only found out that a man had died in the attack.

In 2007, she accompanied a partner, from whom she is now separated, to a party attended by S. and other representatives of the right-wing extremist scene. The statement the woman made in February and March seemed fairly consistent despite the long time that had passed since then. However, there is no DNA evidence or other evidence from the crime scene.

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