Status: 03/08/2022 11:57
More than 30 years after an arson attack on accommodation for asylum seekers in Saarland, the federal prosecutor’s office has filed a complaint against a right-wing extremist, in particular for murder. A 27-year-old Ghanaian died at the time.
More than 30 years after the arson attack on accommodation for asylum seekers in Saarlouis, Saarland, the federal prosecutor’s office has filed a complaint. The authorities in Karlsruhe announced that there were sufficient suspicions that the German right-wing extremist Peter S. had set the fire. Samuel Yeboah, who fled Ghana, died in the attack.
The Federal Prosecutor’s Office charges S. with murder, attempted murder in 20 cases, and arson causing death and attempted death.
Spilled and set on fire
The right-wing extremist met like-minded people at a restaurant in Saarlouis late in the evening of September 18, 1991 and spoke about the racist attacks in Hoyerswerda, authorities said. His interlocutors had made it clear that they would also approve of such attacks in Saarlouis.
In the early morning, S. then spilled gasoline in the stairwell of the accommodation and set it on fire. The fire spread at high speed. Yeboah died of severe burns and smoke inhalation. Two other residents were only able to save themselves by jumping out of the window, in which they were injured. The other 18 residents escaped unscathed.
S. was arrested in April and has been detained ever since. The state protection senate of the Higher Regional Court in Koblenz must now rule on the charges.
Probably deficits in police work
There are several reasons why the charges were only filed after 30 years: Investigations in Saarland were interrupted because no perpetrator could be identified. It was only about two years ago that the federal prosecutor’s office took up the case because of new discoveries.
Following the arrest of the alleged perpetrator, Saarland State Police Chief Norbert Rupp apologized on behalf of the state’s police headquarters for “obvious shortcomings in the police work at the time led to the abandonment of investigations”.
In August 2020, he set up a task force to investigate the treatment at the time. According to initial findings, gaps in the collection, evaluation and dissemination of information have been identified.