German National Sentenced to Death in China

Yesterday (August 20) a court in Xiamen, a coastal city in China’s Fujian Province, sentenced a German national to death. The man, whose name has not been revealed to protect his privacy, was found guilty of manslaughter: he allegedly killed his ex-girlfriend and her boyfriend on a street of the Southern Chinese city. This is the first time a German citizen faces the death penalty in China. 

According to reports, the 36-year-old German had met his Venezuelan girlfriend in Munich, where they both studied sinology. They broke up in 2005, but allegedly the man did not get over the end of their relationship. The woman and her new boyfriend later moved to China. They have a child together, who lives with relatives in Germany. 

View of Xiamen

On June 2010 the man, armed with a hammer and a knife, assaulted his ex-girlfriend and her 39-year-old boyfriend, who was also a German national. Although the woman knelt and asked for forgiveness, the man killed them. Afterwards, he tried to commit suicide but survived.

According to his lawyer, the man had expected the verdict and reacted calmly.  
The German government stated that it will do “everything in its power” to prevent the execution, as Germany is opposed to the death penalty. The Ministry of Justice of Bavaria, the federal state from which the German national comes, endorsed the rejection of the death sentenced expressed by the Federal Government.  

The verdict of the Xiamen Intermediate People’s Court, however, will have to be confirmed by the Supreme Court before the death sentence is carried out.  

In 2009, a British national had been sentenced to death for drug smuggling, so far the only European to have ever been executed in China. 


Categories: China, death penalty, germany

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