Not legally binding – police officer tortured and murdered: life imprisonment

A 33-year-old went on trial in Graz for allegedly kidnapping, torturing and shooting a police officer in Baghdad as a member of a terrorist organization. He did not feel guilty and insisted for four days of trial that he was being confused with his brother. But the lie collapsed. On Monday he was sentenced to life in prison.

In 2015, the defendant is said to have kidnapped a Sunni police officer as a member of the Shiite Badr organization. The victim was tortured – they pulled off his toenails and fingernails – and then killed with three shots in the back of the head. Before that, the terrorists had extorted 45,000 US dollars, which the family paid. There is a risk of death penalty at home. There is even an Iraqi arrest warrant against the asylum seeker, who lives in Graz. But extradition is out of the question because he faces the death penalty in his home country. So the Graz Regional Criminal Court must conduct proceedings for murder and kidnapping as terrorist crimes. The 33-year-old’s accomplices have already been convicted in Baghdad. The Badr organization, to which the defendant is said to have belonged, played a major role in the trial. “She waged a bloodthirsty war against the Sunnis, the largest religious group in Islam,” the prosecutor explained in his plea. The terrorist militia financed itself through kidnappings. Known for kidnapping and murderThe renowned Islamism expert Guido Steinberg explained in one of the past negotiations that the defendant probably belongs to another, even worse militia: “The League of the Righteous,” Steinberg suspects. Photos on the 33-year-old’s cell phone would indicate this. “This militia is better known for kidnapping their victims, torturing them, collecting ransom money for them and then murdering them anyway.” On Monday, on what is now the fourth day of the trial since February 2023, a live video interrogation of the defendant’s brother was scheduled to take place Iraq. The 33-year-old had initially claimed in the trial that it was not he, but his brother, who was responsible for the atrocities. Admitted to being a watchdog in the event of a kidnapping, but since the interrogation could not take place in the Austrian embassy in Baghdad, but only in an Iraqi court, he wanted to Doesn’t accuse his brother of possibly being put under pressure. Ultimately, the defendant admitted that he had lied anyway – out of pure fear, as he claimed. And between the lines he also admitted to a kind of “watchdog service” during the kidnapping. The 33-year-old has been in custody since February 2022. Now, after more than a year of trial, the (not legally binding) verdict was reached: life imprisonment.
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