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Police fear sex crime in teen murders

Two teenagers found dead in the Lower Saxony town of Bodenfelde were possibly the victims of a sexual predator, investigators said Monday.

Police fear sex crime in teen murders
Photo: DPA

The bodies of the 13-year-old boy and 14-year-old girl were found partially undressed and lying close to one another in a wooded area on the outskirts of town, said criminal director Andreas Borchert on Monday at a press conference in the nearby city of Northeim.

A tip from the public indicated the children were spoken to by someone in a dark car.

For “strategic reasons relating to the investigation,” police refused to say how the children had died. The head of the murder squad carrying out the investigation, Hartmut Reinecke, declined to give details on any injuries the children had suffered.

Click here for a gallery of the investigation in Bodenfelde.

Post-mortem results had not yet been provided, said state prosecutor Hans Hugo Heimgärtner. The two youngsters had had no close personal connection, though they went to the same school.

“They definitely were known to each other from there,” Heimgärtner said.

It was rare for sexual criminals to target both both girls and boys, Borchert said, adding that there was a group of perpetrators who targeted small children and to whom the gender did not matter.

The police had been searching intensively for the girl, Nina B., since Tuesday, when she was reported missing by her mother, Borchert said. Fellow students had seen and even spoken to her during the past week but she had hidden from police.

The boy, Tobias L., had accompanied a friend to the train station in Bodenfelde on Saturday night around 8 pm but had not been seen after that. Borchert confirmed that the boy’s mother had found his body on Sunday.

About 500 students from the Bodenfelde school bid farewell to the dead teenagers at a service on Monday morning. Mayor Hartmut Koch said the town was deeply shocked by the crime.

DPA/The Local

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GERMANY AND ISRAEL

Germany in talks on further payout for 1972 Olympics victims

The German government says it is in talks over further compensation for victims of the attack on the Munich Olympics, as the 50th anniversary of the atrocity approaches.

Germany in talks on further payout for 1972 Olympics victims

Ahead of the commemoration in September, relatives of the Israelis killed have indicated they are unhappy with what Germany is offering.

“Conversations based on trust are taking place with representatives of the victims’ families,” a German interior ministry spokesman told AFP when asked about the negotiations.

He did not specify who would benefit or how much money had been earmarked, saying only that any package would “again” be financed by the federal government, the state of Bavaria and the city of Munich.

On September 5th, 1972, eight gunmen broke into the Israeli team’s flat at the Olympic village, shooting dead two and taking nine Israelis hostage, threatening to kill them unless 232 Palestinian prisoners were released.

West German police responded with a bungled rescue operation in which all nine hostages were killed, along with five of the eight hostage-takers and a police officer.

An armed police officer in a tracksuit secures the block where terrorists  held Israeli hostages at the Olympic Village in Munich on 5th September 1972.

An armed police officer in a tracksuit secures the block where terrorists held Israeli hostages at the Olympic Village in Munich on 5th September 1972. Photo: picture alliance / dpa | Horst Ossingert

The spokeswoman for the victims’ families, Ankie Spitzer, told the German media group RND that the amount currently on the table was “insulting” and threatened a boycott of this year’s commemorations.

She said Berlin was offering a total of €10 million including around €4.5 million already provided in compensation between 1972 and 2002 — an amount she said did not correspond to international standards. 

“We are angry and disappointed,” said Spitzer, the widow of fencing coach Andre Spitzer who was killed in the attack. “We never wanted to talk publicly about money but now we are forced to.”

RND reported that the German and Israeli governments would like to see an accord by August 15th.

The interior ministry spokesman said that beyond compensation, Germany intended to use the anniversary for fresh “historical appraisal, remembrance and recognition”.

He said this would include the formation of a commission of German and Israeli historians to “comprehensively” establish what happened “from the perspective of the year 2022”.

This would lead to “an offer of further acts of acknowledgement of the relatives of the victims of the attack” and the “grave consequences” they suffered.

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