Syrian, wrongly imprisoned in Germany, started fire that killed him

Germany map
Germany map

A Syrian man, who was mistakenly incarcerated in western Germany for over two months, started the fire in which he himself perished, investigators have found on Monday.

According to a report by justice authorities in the state of North Rhine-Westphalia, where the incident took place, they believe the 26-year-old deliberately started the blaze in his prison cell “presumably with suicidal intent’’.

According to State Justice Minister, Peter Biesenbach, his motive remains a mystery.

He died in hospital on September 29, some two weeks after the fire left him with serious burns.

Due to a mix-up with a thief of the same name, he had sat in prison for over two months, while the mistake only came to light after the fire.

Several women had accused him of sexual harassment and stalking, which Biesenbach said perhaps explained why he did not resist imprisonment or demand a lawyer.

The full findings of the over-60-page report compiled by an external assessor are to be presented to the judicial committee of the state parliament on Wednesday.

Ten other people, eight prison employees and two cellmates, were injured in the fire. (dpa/NAN)


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