BERLIN (AP) — A court in Germany convicted two Afghan men Thursday of killing their 34-year-old elder sister because they didn’t agree with her lifestyle.
The Berlin regional court found the men, aged 28 and 24, guilty of murder for killing the mother of two in July 2021. Her body was later found in a suitcase buried near where the older brother lived in Bavaria.
Judges sentenced the men to life imprisonment. Announcing the verdict, presiding judge Thomas Gross said the men had sought to deny their sister the right to choose her own life and viewed her as “inferior” because she was a woman, German news agency dpa reported.
The victim, who was divorced, had tried to start a new relationship that her brothers disagreed with.
During the trial the older brother, Sayed Yousuf H., had claimed his sister Maryam H.’s death was an accident and his younger brother hadn’t been involved. Lawyers for the younger brother, Seyed Mahdi H., had sought their client’s acquittal.
The surnames of the defendants and the victim, who all came to Germany as refugees, were not released for privacy reasons.
In a separate case, a court in northern Germany convicted a 22-year-old German woman of being an accessory to manslaughter in the killing of a 27-year-old Iraqi man, identified only as Ceetin K.
The asylum-seeker was killed in April 2017 by the woman’s brother and then-boyfriend on the North Sea island of Amrum. His body was found buried in the dunes six months later. The men — both German citizens, have already been convicted of murder, with the brother receiving a seven-year sentence and the other man sentenced to life imprisonment.
The Flensburg regional court concluded that the defendant, whose name wasn’t released, had falsely told her then-boyfriend that Ceetin K. had raped her, resulting in the men’s plan to kill him.
It sentenced the woman Thursday to three years in prison, with three months already considered served due to the length of the court proceedings.
She was sentenced as a juvenile due to the fact that she was 16 at the time of the killing. The court had sentenced her as an accessory to manslaughter, rather than accessory to murder, because she wasn’t aware of the way in which Ceetin K. was to be killed.
Both verdicts can be appealed.
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