Siblings ask court to strike down incest ban

27th February 2007, Comments 0 comments

27 February 2007, Karlsruhe, Germany (dpa) - A brother and sister who live together and have had four children have filed an urgent suit with Germany's constitutional court demanding the "right" to incest, a court spokeswoman said Monday. Patrick S, 30, has already received a suspended jail term for incest, followed by a 25-month actual jail term. He now faces a 30-month sentence because he has continued the relationship. He and his sister Susan K, 22, have posed in the German media for romantic photos tog

27 February 2007

Karlsruhe, Germany (dpa) - A brother and sister who live together and have had four children have filed an urgent suit with Germany's constitutional court demanding the "right" to incest, a court spokeswoman said Monday.

Patrick S, 30, has already received a suspended jail term for incest, followed by a 25-month actual jail term. He now faces a 30-month sentence because he has continued the relationship.

He and his sister Susan K, 22, have posed in the German media for romantic photos together. She has also received a first conviction of incest and was placed on probation for one year.

They did not grow up together, but first met in 2000 when Patrick S, who had been adopted, looked up his birth mother and first met his sister. The relationship began when the sister was 16. Under German law, incest is only punishable after the age of 18.

Of their four daughters aged between 5 years and 22 months, two were born with handicaps, but prosecutors have been unable to prove this had genetic origins.

The spokeswoman said the court in the city of Karlsruhe which decides whether German laws conform with the constitution would issue a provisional ruling quickly on whether to stay the term of imprisonment.

The siblings have retained a professor of criminal law, Knut Amelung, who will argue that a ban on sex between siblings breaches their civil rights and is a "relic of the past." An appeal court in Dresden rejected an appeal by the man last month.

Several non-government politicians in Germany have called for a review of the law since their lawyer this month foreshadowed the appeal. Critics of the law suggested that incest should be merely rejected as immoral without being considered a crime.

German media reports said S began looking after his sister when she was orphaned by the death of their widowed mother at 50 and intimacy followed. The sister has also had a child by another man whom she met while Patrick S was in jail.

DPA

Subject: German news

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