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Turkish court finds Marco guilty

The family and lawyer of Marco Weiss have reacted angrily to the Turkish court sentence handed to the 19-year-old for sexually abusing a British girl while on vacation in Turkey in 2007.

Turkish court finds Marco guilty
Weiss in prison in 2008. Photo: DPA

The Antalya court ruled on Wednesday that Weiss, who spent eight months in a Turkish prison after his arrest, was guilty of “sexually abusing a child.” But the sentence of two years, two months, and 20 days was suspended with the addition of 2.5 years of probation.

“This verdict says nothing about guilt or innocence,” Weiss’ mother told daily Bild on Thursday. “Naturally we don’t recognise it. It is false and unjust. Marco doesn’t want to let it stand like this.”

His father told the paper that the family was “utterly disappointed.”

In April 2007, the mother of a 13-year-old British girl called Charlotte pressed charges, alleging that Weiss had sexual relations with her daughter while both were on vacation with their parents at Antalya resort.

Weiss admitted to sexual contact with the girl, but denied having intercourse and said she had told him she was 15-years-old.

The case created a storm of media coverage in Germany and caused diplomatic tensions with Turkey when Berlin demanded Weiss’ release. He was allowed to return to Germany in December of 2007 and now lives in Uelzen in Lower Saxony with his family.

Despite the fact that he will not face more time behind bars, his family and lawyer said they were disappointed in the verdict and plan to appeal after they clarify whether it will have legal repercussions, such as probation, in Germany.

The prosecution is also reportedly planning to appeal the ruling.

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CRIME

Driver in Bavaria gets €5,000 fine for giving the finger to speed camera

A driver in Passau has been hit with a €5,000 fine because he was caught by traffic police giving the middle finger.

Driver in Bavaria gets €5,000 fine for giving the finger to speed camera

The district court of Passau sentenced the 53-year-old motorist to the fine after he was caught making the rude gesture in the direction of the speedometer last August on the A3 near the Donautal Ost service area, reported German media. 

The man was not caught speeding, however. According to traffic police who were in the speed camera vehicle at the time, another driver who had overtaken the 53-year-old was over the speed limit. 

When analysing the photo, the officers discovered the slower driver’s middle finger gesture and filed a criminal complaint.

The driver initially filed an objection against a penalty order, and the case dragged on for several months. However, he then accepted the complaint. He was sentenced to 50 ‘unit fines’ of €100 on two counts of insulting behaviour, amounting to €5,000.

READ ALSO: The German rules of the road that are hard to get your head around

In a letter to police, the man said he regretted the incident and apologised. 

Police said it was “not a petty offence”, and that the sentence could have been “even more drastic”.

People who give insults while driving can face a prison sentences of up to a year.

“Depending on the nature and manner of the incident or in the case of persons with a previous conviction, even a custodial sentence without parole may be considered for an insult,” police in Passau said. 

What does the law say?

Showing the middle finger to another road user in road traffic is an offence in Germany under Section 185 of the Criminal Code (StGB). It’s punishable by a prison sentence of up to one year or a fine.

People can file a complaint if someone shows them the middle finger in road traffic, but it usually only has a chance of success if witnesses can prove that it happened.

As well as the middle finger, it can also be an offence to verbally insult someone. 

READ ALSO: The German road signs that confuse foreigners

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