Vietnamese face trial for killing spree
13 August 2007, Stade, Germany (dpa) - The grisly killing of seven Asians in an armed robbery at a Chinese restaurant comes to trial in the north of Germany on August 22, court officials announced Monday.
13 August 2007
Stade, Germany (dpa) - The grisly killing of seven Asians in an armed robbery at a Chinese restaurant comes to trial in the north of Germany on August 22, court officials announced Monday.
Five staff from Malaysia, Thailand, Vietnam and Hong Kong were tied up and shot dead along with popular local restaurant owner Danny Wing Hong Fan, 36, and his 28-year-old wife, both British citizens. Only their baby survived.
Shocked Asians in Germany wondered at the time if the late February 4 killings at the Lin Yue restaurant in Sittensen, 40 kilometres south-west of Hamburg, were meant as a warning from ruthless gangs.
However, prosecutors say the explanation was simpler: a Vietnamese former kitchen porter for the Hong Fans had told friends about the prosperous couple and a plot evolved to rob them and share the booty.
Five Vietnamese nationals have been charged with the murders and face trial in the nearby town of Stade. Proceedings are expected to last for several months.
The suspects, all living long-term in Germany, are accused of tying up and torturing the staff after hours and stealing notebook computers, mobile phones and 5,000 euros (6,880 dollars).
In Sittensen, a quiet town on the edge of the Hamburg commuter belt, many residents had dined in style at the walk-up Lin Yue in a modern building in the town centre.
The massacre was the worst killing in the area since the mayhem of World War II. Residents' hearts went out to the 2-year-old girl orphaned in the attack.
According to the British Foreign Office, her father had spent most of his life in Glasgow, Scotland, and her mother had been born in Berlin.
Lower Saxony state put a large team of detectives on the case. They used modern forensic methods, including combing the scene for hairs, fibres and specks of blood and recording everything in a three-dimensional computerized image of the restaurant.
Police had a lucky break just a day after the attack, when a regular patrol saw two Vietnamese in a car on a country road, stopped them and became suspicious.
The other suspects were arrested over a period of weeks as the investigation continued.
Subject: German news