Three teens jailed for bomb­ing Ger­man Sikh tem­ple

New Straits Times - - World -

BER­LIN: A Ger­man court con­victed three 17-year-olds of par­tic­i­pat­ing last year in a bomb at­tack on a Sikh tem­ple that was mo­ti­vated by ha­tred of other re­li­gions.

They were given pri­son sen­tences rang­ing be­tween six and seven years.

The boys had been rad­i­calised for some time be­fore the April 16 at­tack in the western city of Essen and had been in con­tact with ul­tra­con­ser­va­tive Mus­lims known as Salafists, the Essen state court said on Tues­day.

But the three-month trial turned up no ev­i­dence that they had any im­me­di­ate con­tact with the Is­lamic State group, the court said in a state­ment.

Two of the de­fen­dants, iden­ti­fied only as T and B, were con­victed of at­tempted mur­der and bod­ily harm. The court found that they placed a home-made bomb — a fire ex­tin­guisher filled with ex­plo­sives — out­side an en­trance of the tem­ple.

A pri­est suf­fered a bro­ken foot and sev­eral other peo­ple suf­fered cuts. The tem­ple’s door was de­stroyed and win­dow frames ripped out.

T, who set off the ex­plo­sion, was sen­tenced to seven years in pri­son, while B was sen­tenced to six years and nine months. The court said that the youths, who fled the scene, had bought the in­gre­di­ents for the ex­plo­sives and the det­o­na­tor on­line.

The third de­fen­dant, iden­ti­fied only as I, wasn’t at the scene of the bomb­ing or in­volved in mak­ing the bomb. How­ever, the court found that he had agreed with the other two to carry out an at­tack and had sug­gested the Sikh tem­ple as a pos­si­ble tar­get.

He was con­victed of con­spir­acy to mur­der and given a six-year sen­tence.

The boys were tried as ju­ve­niles in a trial from which the media and public were ex­cluded. All three lived in or near Essen.

The court said that T and B largely ad­mit­ted dur­ing the trial to their in­volve­ment in the ex­plo­sion and to hav­ing be­ing rad­i­calised, but said they hadn’t in­tended to kill any­one. AP

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