Dusseldorf Court Hears 1st Case of New Year’s Eve Sexual Attacks in Germany

Dusseldorf Court Hears 1st Case of New Year’s Eve Sexual Attacks in Germany © Photo: Pixabay

17:28 11.04.2016(updated 17:42 11.04.2016) Get short URL

A Moroccan man stood trial on Monday for allegedly sexually assaulting a woman on New Year’s Eve in Dusseldorf, in what is the first such case to go on trial following a string of attacks across Germany, local media said.

MOSCOW (Sputnik) — The 33-year-old man, identified only as Taoufik M., was also charged with inflicting bodily harm and causing damage to another person’s property, the Bild newspaper said. He faces up to four years in jail.
The victim filed charges against the man, who had reportedly applied for asylum in Germany, after she recognized him in a Spiegel TV documentary.

The 18-year-old said she was celebrating the New Year in the old part of the city together with four others when she was encircled and groped by a group of 15 to 20 men, which allegedly included Taoufik who shouted at her in a foreign language.

A wave of sexual assaults hit Germany on New Year’s Eve, most notably in Cologne. Over 500 victims contacted police to press charges of sexual attacks and theft against men who they said were predominantly of North African origin.

The German outlet said this was the first such case tried by a German court. In nearby Cologne, three men have already been convicted of theft and a fourth one has been charged with sexual assault. Reports of the attacks triggered a scandal in Germany and forced the government to review its open-door policy toward asylum seekers.

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