The following are a collection of posts for German news outlets on the the Love Parade Trial. We are using Google Translate to convert to English, but including the original media link.

We will endeavour to update this as often as possible.

Due to other commitments we have not been able to follow the trial as closely as we would like, due to this, we are providing translations from a dedicated to the daily process of the trial.

Day 158: The ex-defendant from the building office

From Zübeyde Sürgit am October 31, 2019

Day three of the testimony of the ex-defendant and employee of the construction office. Today, co-plaintiffs and defense lawyers have the right to ask. As a rule, these process days are quickly over. Not today. Surprisingly many lawyers speak up. But the answers of the witness are very short.

The fences

First, it’s about the fences on the ramp. A watch video showing the upper ramp area is shown. Then you can see the crowds on the ramp and above it two rows of fences. The video shows people breaking through fence rows and climbing the terrain. The witness is asked if he had thought in advance about what could happen when fences are overturned. “No,” says the 57-year-old. Not more. Much of what he says sounds fragmentary to me. Another example: “Separation systems have to be there. What they look like is not in the law. We have to check if they exist. They were there, “says the official. He comes nowhere in the survey in a longer explanatory mode. His sentences are short and precise. When asked if he believes


The second part of the trial day is spent in listening to a defender’s remarks. The introduction to his questions is so detailed that at the adjunct bank protest is made. Content is about plans of the event area, which were made at different times. This shows what has been redesigned over time and the event, according to the plan. The extent to which these plans have been implemented is partly compared with photographs. It’s a tough part of the negotiation.

Traffic jam on the A59

On the way back from the Loveparade process I drive as always on the A59. Traffic jam until the exit to the center. To the right of the track I can see the terrain of the former freight yard. It is completely overgrown and the big ruin is still not demolished, it stands there unchanged. I am born in Duisburg and as long as I can remember, every construction project on this site has failed. A shopping center that was to be called Multicasa, modern residential and office buildings designed by star architect Sir Norman Foster, plans for a furniture store and also an outlet center have failed. How was a free party organized for hundreds of thousands of people here in the summer of 2010? I do not understand that until today.

Day 157: Credit

By Martin Teigeler on October 30, 2019

Second day of the questioning of the ex-defendant , who was jointly responsible for the approval process for the Loveparade in 2010 in the Duisburg Building Office. The witness has at the beginning of memory gaps. The presiding judge Mario Plein reminds the 57-year-old: No speculation please, only “hard facts”.

Numerous mails and minutes from the weeks before and after the catastrophe on July 24, 2010 will be read in the courtroom.

Annoyed mail

Fences, emergency exits, Dixieklos – again it is about the specifications of the city to the superstructures of the organizer on the Techno festival grounds. An internal mail from the witness to a colleague is read out. From the news speaks a certain annoyance over the organizer Lopavent, who missed deadlines: “How much overdraft we still give?”

The judge has many questions about the city regulations for evacuation of the terrain. It stipulated a maximum visitor volume of 250,000 people. Plein wants to know, whether in case of emergency – such as a bomb threat – a quick evacuation of all visitors has been considered – because it is not difficult to come on? “No, we do not,” says the witness. This does not provide for the building code. Rather, an evacuation of subareas had been planned.

Monitoring the granted building permit on the day of the event had never been considered. It is not common for a construction supervisor to monitor approved projects, says the witness. One had on July 24, 2010 “no tasks” had, is in his memorial log from the days after the disaster.

No interest in ramp

The former defendant also admits that the building supervisor never dealt with the ramp (that staircase from the tunnel where the catastrophe eventually took its course). The ramp is not a building, so the witness. “The ramp stood as it stood.” The prosecution hooks up: Just as on the event grounds had been on the edge of the ramp fences. The witness can not explain the contradiction properly.

The testimony fits into the picture of the Duisburg city administration in the Loveparade complex. Each department has followed its routine rules. An overall view of a major event that was extraordinary for Duisburg conditions did not appear in the town hall – and if so, then one eye was closed at critical points. You really wanted to have the big event. The Lord Mayor did not care about details .

As said a previous witness, a freelancer from the ranks of the organizer: unlike the Loveparades of previous years in Berlin, Dortmund and Essen, there was in Duisburg to “state authority” missing.

Day 156: Lesson in bureaucracy

By Martin Teigeler on October 29, 2019

57 years. Technical employee at the city of Duisburg. The lecture of the witness is objective-sober, the man’s facial expressions and gestures sparing. His hands usually rest on the table in front of him. Even today’s witness in the Loveparade criminal case was previously defendant.

Due to minor guilt, the case against him and five other colleagues in the city administration (as well as against a former employee of the organizer) had been suspended without conditions in February 2019. Since then, the district court of Duisburg is only negotiating against three Lopavent employees.

Not a word loses the cool administrative man – you could call him bureaucrat – in his opening statement on the day of the disaster, about the 21 young victims who died in the throng. His remarks are a (further) lesson in bureaucracy in this process. The witness describes his memories of the approval process for the Loveparade until the site was inspected one day before the event: “At the end of the visit, the task for me as construction supervisor was completed.” A colleague had done a few follow-up checks. He himself had not been there on the day of the parade.

Dock incomplete occupied?

As head of department of the Lower Building Supervision in the urban building and construction consultancy, the witness was responsible for processing the approval procedure. But he has not approved any event, he emphasizes several times, but a building – that are the conditions for the old freight yard area in Duisburg meant. So often the witness refers to his (non-) competence that the presiding judge Mario Plein interrupts him at one point and says that it is not always about responsibilities.

The witness reported in detail on the several months of testing the Techno Festival by the city administration. Fire protection, building law, visitor numbers: many aspects were in the process often the subject – also, that there was a heated dispute between city and organizer (and that in the Duisburg city administration just about every civil servant strictly according to Scheme F only looked exactly to the plate) , It is normal that “with builders are not always on one wavelength,” says the ex-defendant. But the organizers have finally met the building regulations.

At the decisive, fatal points of the Loveparade – selection of the terrain as well as entrance and exit system through tunnels – the witness according to own data – attention repetition – was not responsible. In general, he sees no fault with himself. In his time as a defendant, he had sometimes “wondered why not more than ten people sat in the dock.” The judge does not ask who the witness missed on the dock.

On Wednesday (30.10.2019) the questioning of the witness will be continued.

Day 155: Is frustrating

By Doro Blome-Müller am October 11, 2019

Even on the third day of his interrogation, the witness, an employee of the Duisburg Building Office, has very little to hear. “They talk very little, I just realize,” says one of the angry sub-lawsuit lawyers. Where the former defendant at the time, when the Love Parade was approved on the grounds of the former freight yard, located the entrance to the event site, wants to know another lawyer.

“The term venues does not exist in construction law,” explains the witness. The lawyer improves after: “meeting place.” That was the ramp, then the man still gets an answer. But for the tunnel, the public order office had been responsible, it had been a public transport area. “It was so natural for me that I did not even talk about it back then.”

No further questions

After about half an hour, the lawyers of the sideline throw in the towel. Anyway, we always get either to hear that the building authority was not responsible, or that a situation is not relevant in terms of building law and therefore was not an issue in the department at the time. And after a few questions, the defense also states succinctly that the witness does not help with the questions to be clarified. I feel with the lawyers, they seem frustrated, it’s me. This attitude of saying as little as possible and of responding stereotypically excites me.

“Now it’s getting really interesting”

After one hour, the witness is dismissed and the judge uses the time to read the interrogation records of a now deceased witness. This prepares us for the next witness. He was the civil servant who was actually in charge of the permit, and everyone – from prosecutors to co-plaintiffs to defense lawyers – believes that this man can bring more light into the dark of government action. “Now it will be really interesting for us,” notes one of the defenders. However, we all have to be patient for a while, because the next negotiation dates are only after the autumn holidays.

Day 154: “I have not found a mistake today”

By Dominik Peters am October 9, 2019

“Did you have any legal concerns during the approval process?” The judge asks. The witness, as on the day before the formerly accused department head of the Lower Building Supervision , wants to avoid: “The question is put wrong”. 

The judge still wrestles the 60-year-old from a concrete answer. “I had no building-legal concerns,” the witness finally says. The decisive factor is, “whether in the end an approvable product comes out.”  Since he does not want to have checked the applications as a department manager himself, he must usually fit in detail requests.

Witness: Not responsible for tunnel and ramp

By and large, the witness remains faithful to his line from the previous day, even in the subsequent questioning by the chief prosecutor. His authority had adhered to the legal requirements. “Our scope of testing is the structural.” Visitor flows in the tunnel and on the ramp system have never been an issue for the Lower Building Supervision, says the witness.

“This ramp was not an escape route,” says the witness. In his opinion, it did not fall within the scope of its authority. The fact that there were no clear agreements regarding the responsibilities for the tunnel and the ramp has already been raised in the process.

“Found no error until today”

He had given much thought to the disaster after the disaster, says the witness. “I have not found a mistake today.” The Attorney General has no further questions. That’s a pity, because for now many questions remain about possible omissions in the final acceptance of the site open – about the lack of speaker systems and fences on the ramp. Tomorrow, co-plaintiffs and defenders are on the line. 

Day 153: “The builder plans and the authority checks”

By Dominik Peters am October 8, 2019

The department head of the Lower Building Supervision was himself a defendant in the Loveparade trial until January. Today he testifies as a witness. He should have been “involved in the planning of the event,” it says in the court announcement. 

The witness concretized, just as his supervisor said a few weeks ago : “We do not plan ourselves.” His department is only submitted planning results for review. He himself was not involved, but “the colleagues then ask in individual cases for legal matters.”

Legislators have made “clear guidelines”

The core message of the 60-year-old: “A building authority needs a building application with verifähigen documents”. Again and again he invokes the law. “We have a legislator, who has set clear guidelines.” One has kept to that.

That the Love Parade in the framework of the Ruhr2010 had a different status, the witness did not perceive so. “These emotional considerations, I do not put on. Otherwise you can not work. “He did not feel any particular pressure from his superiors. 

Lawyer wanted permission to “talk away”

Otherwise, the talks with the lawyer of the organizer company ran. He was trying to “wegzudiskutieren the permit requirement.” An employee of the organizer company should have said that the company would “eventually build nothing”. This is how it is in an in-city mail.

Finally, the organizer submitted a building application in June – one with many gaps and ambiguities. The construction supervision demanded improvements. The judge sends the corresponding mails onto the screen and read them out.

On the day of the event, the application for the witness was finally “done positively”. Further questions will be asked by the judge and the other parties in the next two days.

Day 152: Routine

By Doro Blome-Müller am October 4, 2019

The trial starts with a delay of 20 minutes. The server has swallowed and has to be rebooted. The process participants take it easy; Nobody promises revolutionary new insights from the demands of the co-plaintiff and the defense to the chief of construction.

Essentially uninvolved

For detailed questions, the former defendant can not contribute much. No, she did not read this and that correspondence, she was only involved in approval procedures when there were problems or special cases. She can say very little about how she works in her office. It is interesting, however, that she and her authority hierarchically assigned to the Duisburg Baudezernenten, although it is actually subordinate to the district government.

The mantra

Like a mantra, the witness repeats the detailed questions, the building authority does not have to deal with streams of visitors or the arrangement of events, but merely to examine whether an area or a building complies with the legal requirements. Isolating devices? One had to check whether there were any, not how they were structured. The tunnel? Road space, not the responsibility of the building authority.


At three-fifteen the witness is released. She leaves the hall where she sat in the dock for more than a year before the case was closed against her. I do not think she will come back again. In any case, I would not do so voluntarily and it is unlikely that she will be re-summoned.
The trial day is not over yet. We work on formalities. Lawyers make statements, the court introduces further evidence. In fact, the judge reads a testimony and a contract, and we hear and read e-mail traffic. Exciting is different.

Day 151: “We are not bent”

By Doro Blome-Müller am October 1, 2019

Day two in the witness stand for the chief of construction and former defendant. As was the case yesterday, it is essentially about who had which responsibilities in the city, or who felt responsible in the planning for what.
Feelings. My feeling in the survey is similar to my sense of Process Day 79 : Obviously, no one felt in the run-up to outside of the self-defined own Beritts times to see whether in the planning of all safety-related areas – including tunnel and ramp – was thought ,

Are you bent?

Not even the employees of the building authority, for which, according to the witness never considered that they could be responsible for the tunnel . However, elsewhere they demanded from the organizer so many and exact proofs, reports and concepts that they were regarded by the other participants, including in parts of the city administration, as particularly restless and petty. At the very least, this can be gleaned from the many, many correspondences and protocols introduced during this process. Why they suddenly granted approval on July 23, 2010, despite the lack of evidence at the time, is a big question that we process observers have repeatedly asked ourselves. And even Judge Plein wants to know from the witness: “Are you bent?”

a step in the right direction

The witness denies that. It was rather the case that after months of wrangling the Lopavent people finally called in and wanted to present the required fire protection concept with appropriate plans for escape routes. “It was a step in the right direction,” says the 51-year-old. “On the evening of the 23rd, I had the feeling that we had done everything we needed to do to obtain a legally valid building permit. We did not break in because of some political pressure. “

Job done properly

Even in the aftermath of the accident, the city of Duisburg was evidently of the opinion that it had done everything that had to be done. This is made clear in a memorandum made by the witness following a conference of management boards in August 2010. She gets him again today reproaches and it is said, in the round the question came up, whether one could even carry out major events. One should not be in shock, was the answer. “After all, everyone has done his job well so far.”

Troubleshooting No indication

Maybe that’s true. But even when it was fresh – three weeks after the accident – the Duisburg city council could have learned something from the 21 dead and hundreds injured: If nobody did anything wrong, then there is a mistake in the system , And you should find that – I think – as fast as possible.
But that was not up for debate at the time.

Day 150: “The building office does not plan, it checks”

From Zübeyde Sürgit am September 26, 2019

Again, a familiar face sits in the witness box. The 51-year-old employee of the city of Duisburg was still indicted until February 2019. In 2010, she led the building authority and played an important role in the building permits necessary for the Love Parade.

“The building office does not plan, it checks.”

Her statement begins with the urban employee expressing her sympathy to the bereaved. There is nothing worse than losing a child. But the construction office has the task to examine a building, a square or an area. Not to plan. You rely on the information provided by the applicant. They examined the areas that had been relevant under building law. In the other areas one relied on the competence of the police, the fire brigade and the organizer.


On this process day, relationships and relationships are mainly clarified. So far, the procedure has often been concerned with chronological processes and planning. But today two conflicts are more in focus:

The dispute within the city of Duisburg is about the then Rechtsdezernenten Rabe and the pressure that had been exercised at the time by the city leaders on the building authority. The witness recalls that the lawyer-in-chief has come to a meeting between Bauamt and Lopavent and has called on the authorities to cooperate. The Lord Mayor wishes the event, remembers the witness.

The second conflict was probably between Bauamt and organizer Lopavent. The lawyer of the company had negotiated with the authority and refused to make a written request. Overall, the talks were very difficult. This is not new.


By and large, we do not find anything surprising in this testimony. The survivors of the victims, who have come specially for this testimony, leave the room somewhat disappointed.

Next week, the witness’s inquiry will continue.

Day 149: Testimony of the defendant number one

From Zübeyde Sürgit am September 25, 2019

Today, the former Baudezernent the city of Duisburg, Jürgen Dressler, probably the last time participated in Loveparade process – as a witness. After nine years, the man who has never wanted the Love Parade by his own admission can try to complete the chapter. But Dressler said, “If you get close to 21 dead, that will change you forever.”

By February 2019, 101 trial days have begun: A gong and the loudspeaker announcement “In the criminal case against Dressler and others please enter.” Colleagues, spectators, press members gradually enter the hall, sit down on their assigned seats. And of course Jürgen Dressler, who was probably always named first because of the alphabetical order of the defendants. A ritual that was heralded by the name of Jürgen Dressler until the indictment against him and six others was discontinued in February 2019. Today, day three of his testimony was over after half an hour. The process participants had no more important questions to the 72-year-old.

After the departure of the witness Dressler, the court is dedicated to the introduction of further written evidence. For about three hours, minutes are read that a defendant wrote in 2011. These are answers to questions that have been requested for an opinion. The defendant does not answer questions about his comments at the time.

Afterwards, the court will read the logs that the witness after tomorrow made. In 2010 she was head of the office for construction law and construction consulting and also charged.

Day 148: “From Defendant to Witness”

From Zübeyde Sürgit am September 24, 2019

Jürgen Dressler is today 73 years old. When he was building director of the city of Duisburg almost 10 years ago, his department was to examine the Loveparade’s event grounds. Until February 2019 he was still a defendant in the Loveparade trial. Now he is a witness. For since the proceedings against him and six other defendants has been set, he must not refuse the statement.

Jürgen Dressler says that even then he did not want to be silent. As an accused, however, his lawyer advised him to say nothing. But also a psychologist had given him after the Love Parade misfortune the advice not to express in the press for the protection of his coworkers. In his remarks, Dressler emphasizes again and again the situation of his employees and the duty of care that he has exercised towards them. “Those who get close to 21 dead have a mental health problem for the rest of their lives,” says the witness. But he does not admit a debt to him personally or to his employees. “If we had found out that our department had a responsibility for the disaster, we would have stood up,” he continues.

Political responsibility

A letter from the witness to the then mayor Adolf Sauerland shows how he asked him to resign five days after the Loveparade disaster. Other previously unpublished communications to the Lord Mayor and the staff of the city of Duisburg show that the witness has demanded more transparency in the investigation of the accident. “I miss all signals, symbols and initiatives to take political responsibility.” After the disaster, it was in the city administration “chaotic” been. The political leadership had “diluted”. The employees were unsettled. And the Lord Mayor had formally dissolved. Jürgen Dressler makes his displeasure over the former OB Sauerland and the associate Wolfgang Rabeclear. Politically, he had been in a CDU-led city administration, the only alderman with SPD party book.

What is the point of the statement for the process?

101 court days Jürgen Dressler was charged. For nearly ten years he has not lost any public word about the disaster. But the things that have come up in his statement are not surprising. They only give some insight into what happened back then within the city administration. In my view, there are no statements that provide us with important insights in the trial of the three remaining defendants. A lawyer expressed it yesterday as follows: “This process is no longer a process, but a committee of inquiry.” The statement by Jürgen Dressler is another piece in the puzzle.

Day 147: The Baudezernent

From local time Duisburg am September 18, 2019

By Benjamin Sartory on 18.9.2019

Five minutes. So long, for example, lasts the free lecture of today’s witness Jürgen Dressler. Ironically, the former Baudezernent the city of Duisburg, who was still accused until February itself, so know less to report than many other witnesses. Is he walling?

I quickly get the impression that Dressler is about something else. His short remarks should show how little he had to do with the planning of the Love Parade. Why was it investigated against me? Why was I charged? Why am I sitting here as a witness? These questions are the subtext of his statement.

“This is not right!”

Upon request of the judge, Dressler will then be more informative. The story he tells goes like this:

The Duisburg building authorities only came into play at the Loveparade, because the area was to be fenced. They therefore demanded an application from the organizer. The then following process has the ex-Baudezernent according to his own statement but only marginally observed.

Because the city’s top had instructed not him, but another department head to direct the planning of the Love Parade. Dressler lets him see through his interrogation that he is surprised that this other deputy head was not charged. In the meantime, the witness is rumbling. “This is not right,” he almost approaches the judge, as it again goes to supposed responsibilities.

Narrow responsibilities

Away from it, the ex-Baudezernent shows today convinced that the issued by his employees permission was lawful. But she had just referred to the use of the old railway area. In other words, the paths that then became a problem were no longer the responsibility of the office.

The argument Dressler is not new and probably he is right. But over nine years after the Duisburg Love Parade disaster, only one thing interests me: how can you prevent this from happening again? What can one provide to the authorities so that they do not stand in their own way with their narrow-minded responsibilities?

Day 146: “Wisdom”

By Martin Teigeler on September 17, 2019

At the Loveparade 2010 in Duisburg today’s witness was responsible for the technical preparation of the floats. Floats are the big techno cars where DJs and celebrities ride the parade grounds. Since 2006, the witness for Loveparade maker Rainer Schaller was in action.

After the start of the event “I pulled myself out,” says the 45-year-old graduate engineer. The control of the floats would have been responsible for others. His technical preliminary work had been done. He had looked at surveillance cameras on the further events.

He repeatedly emphasizes that he had nothing to do with the event grounds and the access system via tunnels and ramps.

“That does not work here”

The witness does not have a good day. He has a cold, has to cough up and clean his nose more often. His answers to the questions of the presiding judge Mario Plein come over a bit snotty. When asked who all of them belong to the circle of friends of ex-Loveparade employees, the 45-year-old says annoyed: “No statement.” Plein teaches him: “This is not going on here.”

After all, the witness calls a few names. The witness testimony of the old Loveparade crew in recent months is increasingly clear, how many of the long-standing colleagues are still networked and friends – including at least one of the defendants. And then it comes as no surprise: Old friends do not burden themselves in court.

Instead, again many memory gaps, even with this witness. Many statements remain conspicuously vague, nebulous, evasive.

“Claim” Love Parade

In preparation for the trial he read only the Wikipedia article about the Love Parade 2010, he says. There you can read in detail about the course of mass panic with 21 dead. The witness calls the accident in a subordinate clause cool “damage case”.

But when the 45-year-old suddenly reveals his own theories about the Love Parade catastrophe, which he obviously adjusted after the accident, the judge interrupts him. The witness can keep such “wisdom” to himself, says Plein brusquely. Because witnesses are only supposed to report in court what they themselves experienced.

It remains another unproductive witness appearance in a process that runs away the time in July 2020 pending limitation.

Day 145: “I do not believe the witness”

By Doro Blome-Müller am September 12, 2019

The day begins unspectacular. According to the court and prosecutors yesterday, today the plaintiff raises some questions that the witness usually answers with “I can not say today anymore”. There are a few more inconsistencies that let the lawyers and the audience roll with resigned eyes, but probably all had expected – after the day yesterday .

Comprehensive amnesia

The witness seems to be the victim of a massive memory loss (irony mode on). So massive that he can not even remember that he was accompanied by a lawyer at his second interrogation by the police in August 2011. Anyone who has commissioned and paid, wants to know a sideline lawyer. He could not remember having had anything to do with a lawyer, the witness replies. After some back and forth, the lawyer turns indignant to Judge Plein, “I do not believe that to the witness.” And a defense lawyer resigned a little later: “A witness who makes it difficult for us to progress in the Enlightenment.”

“Because I was not asked about it”

The trial day seems to have come to a quick end after three quarters of an hour, as a suffrage lawyer still has a question to the witness. He, musician and DJ, have stated that he had not had any contact with anyone from the crew of the Loveparade 2010 after that? Yes, that’s right. Whether he plays records at openings of John Reed fitness clubs (a fitness chain that belongs to Schaller-Holding RSG , where Rainer Schaller is the managing director)? “Yes”. Also tonight in Mannheim? “Yes.” Why did not he say that? He was not asked after that, says the witness.

“He who lies here will be punished”

Even the very patient judge explains that Rainer Schaller somehow had something to do with the Loveparade 2010, so this information was relevant and he should have mentioned that. Shortly thereafter, the witness is dismissed, but we in the press ask us if the court takes further action against the man. For, as Judge Plein has explained in detail and unequivocally with this witness at the beginning of his questioning: A witness has to testify fully, to add nothing or to omit it. “That sounds complicated, but in principle it’s quite simple: Anyone who lies here will be punished – usually immediately with imprisonment of up to five years.”

Day 144: Two hours of videos

By Doro Blome-Müller am September 11, 2019

With a short break for a coffee break, the whole courtroom looks at the screen for two hours. We see video footage taken from the cab of one of the music trucks. You can see many, moderately talented dancers, bare-chested dancers, the camera setting rarely changes, if the pictures are shaky and techno beats with announcements like: “All hands up” (in German and English version) or ” Duisburg, make some noise! ​​”.

Announcements? When?

We look at this to prepare for the testimony of the next witness. He said – summed up – in his interrogations by the police about eight years ago, he had made early at the Loveparade 2010 from the trucks at the ramp early announcements. People were told to walk off the ramp and make room for the newcomers. At least from our video perspective, there were a few such announcements, though not from the witness, but they were firstly rather vague in content and secondly far too late. The 21 people were already dead or fatally injured. Even a radio protocol of the defendant on the day of the event contradicts the testimony, the announcements were made early.

Contradictions and knowledge gaps

Contradictions exist in this witness many and he is quite brash: Despite the advice of the judge that conjecture is not desirable and conclusions to be identified, we hear many speculations and many conclusions. Judge Plein must ask each time concretely. Then the 38-year-old admits that he says nothing about it, so can not remember. He repeatedly interrupts the judge and he has not found it necessary to continue to prepare for his statement today. That, he is instructed, would have been his duty. Tomorrow, sideline and defense ask their questions.

Day 143: The Narrative of the Love Parade

By Doro Blome-Müller am September 10, 2019

Our present-day witness has had various tasks around the event since 1996, ie a long time before Rainer Schaller and McFit bought the “Loveparade” brand . In 2010 he was in Duisburg responsible for marketing and the recruitment of media partners, such as international TV stations. He represented the actual PR man briefly, as this was on parental leave.

Little involved

He had little to do with the actual production, ie the work on the site and the artistic planning, says the Berliner. In Duisburg he had only participated in a few meetings. Asked for details, he often says “sounds plausible” and “I do not know, I would have to speculate”.

“The event is too expensive”

But what he could remember: That in the planning time the budget question came up. Since it was said “The event is too expensive”. Aha, thinks the process observer in me, now it will be interesting. Because that’s a question that we journalists ask ourselves time and time again: was safety saved and was it the result of the accident? But the witness says it was never considered to save on safety. Whether he can substantiate this impression, asks Judge Plein: “Was that said explicitly?” To save on safety was never discussed.
Not if the witness was there, I think. Suspicious.

Hello again, media numbers!

In the course of the morning, when it comes to the yard area and the question of how many spectators even fit in, we finally meet old acquaintances in the courtroom. The “medial numbers” . Never before would you be able to handle the 1.2 million visitors announced in Duisburg. According to the original view of the building authority, a maximum of 250,000 visitors would have been safe on the site. But, according to the witness, “the numbers – this is the narrative of the Love Parade already in the Berlin times – were more and more screwed up.”
At half past twelve the judge closes the day of the meeting. The witness is dismissed.

Day 142: Short but tough

By Doro Blome-Müller am August 28, 2019

Still a little struck by the holiday-related jet lag, I had already feared that I might fall asleep in court. “It promises to be tough,” I had gewhatsappt after reading the Martin-Teigeler-contribution from yesterday from the tram. A similar scenario was announced. Another employee of Lopavent, who had little to do with the actual events.

Very focused

She focused on her own field of activity at the Loveparade, said the 38-year-old now, after the presiding judge, as usual, the presence of those involved in the process or their authorized representative and began the survey. “Focused” is a term that the witness apparently likes to use, but at least quite often. So, she had been very focused on her tasks, which were located in advance in the area of ​​merchandising and on the day of the event itself in the artist and VIP support.

“I do not even remember who of the gentlemen … is!”

The gain in knowledge regarding the responsibility of the defendants for the 2010 Love Parade is, in my opinion, zero. Yes, one had been like the Lopavent’s head, he had organized the various departments, the other – no longer defendants – had been the creative director. The second defendant is a very nice person and asked for the third remaining defendant looks confused on the ranks of the defense. “I do not even remember who of the gentlemen there is the Lord …”

Read and read

After less than an hour, the court is through with its part of the survey, all other parties involved have no more questions, so the witness is released. Judge Plein uses the unexpected free time to introduce some of the documents that the defense asked for. It concerns the application for a special permit by Lopavent with the city of Duisburg and the resulting decision of the competent authority, as well as a noise protection report, which was necessary for this.

Substantial public interest

As boring as such documents may seem at first sight, there are passages in both the petition and the explanatory memorandum that remind me again of why we are sitting here today and all these days. The McFit attorney’s petition states that “the success of the event is of paramount importance to all involved.” And the exception granted is justified, inter alia: “The event is rated as an economic factor and image bearer for the entire region.” I return to the question: Would there have been the misfortune at the Loveparade 2010 at all, if she had not wanted so politically and her success would not have been of such eminent importance for all those involved?

Day 141: The flow of VIPs

By Martin Teigeler on August 27, 2019

Once again, the court tries to shed some light on the love parade organizers. Who exactly was responsible for planning the access system at the Techno-Parade on July 24, 2010? Who exactly worked on the entry concept for the singling system, tunnel and ramp? Three former Lopavent employees are still sitting in the dock . The prosecution accuses them of negligent assault and negligent homicide. 21 people died in the access area of ​​the Loveparade 2010 in a mass panic. Hundreds were injured.

Today’s witness is 38 years old. She is still working in the group of Loveparade-maker and fitness entrepreneur Rainer Schaller . The event manager states that she was responsible for the “VIP Area” in 2010. About 1,500 very important guests, celebrities and partners were entertained – among other things, the boxer Wladimir Klitschko had been there. The “guest flow” in the VIP area worked, reports the witness.

“Everything OK”

It was a different story with the “guest flow” of ordinary visitors. But she did not notice the deadly chaos in the entrance area at first. “Everything was fine in my view,” says the witness. At 4.30pm on the day of the disaster, she heard rumors of an accident. In the days after that, she helped Lopavent-intern for five days to use material from the surveillance cameras to create a process log of the incident.

She had nothing to do with the tunnel and the ramp during her work, the witness emphasizes. The presiding judge, Mario Plein, repeatedly investigates whether the witness may know anything about the defendants’ actions before and during the parade. But the witness denies this – gives only approximate information on the responsibilities of the three men (with one she met in the beginning of 2019 in his café, but she claims that it was not spoken about the process). It has numerous memory gaps.

“Joa …”

Plein looks a bit lost through the again very empty courtroom, where only a few spectators and journalists have gathered. “Joa …”, he says after three hours with a little sighing undertone and ends his questioning. Even prosecutors and co-plaintiffs have few requests to the witness. The defense has no questions for the woman. End of the processday already at lunchtime. Tomorrow is the next witness turn.

Day 140: Only one door further

From Zübeyde Sürgit am 7th August 2019

“Our job was float control.” No more – no less. So the statement of the train pilot can summarize today and offers in my view, no further court-relevant information. The 43-year-old director of a Berlin event agency shared the task of managing the music cars (called floats) in 2010 with yesterday’s witness .

The two train pilots and their supervisor were in the office of the skyscraper at the main station on the day of the event. They were equipped with radios and cameras. On a magnetic board they moved the floats along the painted map of the event grounds. So they tried to keep track. On the same floor, just one door down, was the security center. On request, the witness tells that he learned of the accident but only at 18 clock – from the television.

Loudspeaker announcements

The witness confirms the testimony of his colleague and explains that there was no attempt from the security center to influence the masses of visitors via the loudspeaker systems of the music cars. He himself did not intervene proactively. Although the 43-year-old had access to surveillance images of the ramp area, there had been no agreement to intervene in any way. The judge wants to know if you could not put a car in front of the ramp to make announcements. The witness claims that his job did not relate to security issues. There were other people for that.

Clearing the curve

However, the flow of visitors at 15:45 should have been so strong that the floats were led away from the ramp area. Because the cars had to drive at this point a curve. Already from earlier Loveparades was known that it could come to difficulties with curves, says the witness.

In spite of this expertise, how do you come up with the idea of ​​letting the floats take a turn in the only entrance and exit area of ​​the event area, I ask myself. You guessed – we do not get an answer to this question. After the presiding judge, the public prosecutor, the co-plaintiffs, the defense attorneys and the experts have asked their questions, the day of the hearing comes to an end. In two weeks the process will continue.

Day 139: The train pilot

From Zübeyde Sürgit am August 6, 2019

The witness is a 49 year old commercial artist from Berlin. In 1995 she worked for the Loveparade for the first time. As a freelancer she has taken over various tasks over the years. In 2010, she had the job of the train pilot, that is, she determined the speed at which the music cars (called floats called) on the grounds should drive on the day of the event. This task she shared with another man who is invited as a witness tomorrow. Both were during the disaster in the operations center in the skyscraper at the main station.

They talked to the floats via radio, the witness explains. Each vehicle had not only a driver and a technician, but also a so-called radio passenger. He was there for communication between the car and the headquarters, says the witness. Their testimony today might clarify what impact the control of the wagons on the site might have had on the disaster.

Would the floats have had to drive another route across the terrain?

The floats drove in the circle during the Loveparade on the old freight yard. Their round passed the ramp, the accident site. There, many incoming visitors should have stopped and thus contributed to the deadly backwater in the only visitor access to the event.

The witness explains that she was aware that the access area was a critical issue. There were not only many people on the site, also the music cars had to go at this point a curve, says the 49-year-old. This has additionally displaced the flow of visitors at this point.

Would the floats have been able to make loudspeaker announcements?

The music cars were equipped with public address systems. Each car had a DJ who hung up. That’s how the love parade started. When the Love Parade was opened on July 24, 2010 in Duisburg, the so-called Loveparade anthem sounded on all cars at the same time. All loudspeakers sounded the area with the same VHF signal. This could theoretically also be used for security announcements, says the witness. It would have to appeal to all radio passengers and cause the switching of the speaker systems, she explains.

But it did not get to that. Why these facilities have not been used for announcements to get people to spread out on the grounds and reduce pressure in the entrance area is something we do not hear today.


On Friday, the court will announce the negotiating calendar for next year. 51 times the court should still come together in 2020 – up to a verdict, or at least until the statute of limitations?

Day 138: Leftovers from the day before

By Dominik Peters am 1st of August 2019

Even before the start of negotiations can be foreseen: This will be a short day. The prosecutor announced yesterday that he had no further questions for the witness. The last questions to the man who should count visitors at the Loveparade on Computer Monitor are co-plaintiffs and defenders.

Visitor counting with a mouse click

He had worked in the security industry for a long time during his studies, the witness says on demand. Especially in the field of video surveillance, he had not been used before the Love Parade, but had felt sufficiently briefed.

He always counted the visitors in four predefined areas on the hour, with a mouse click on the individual people in the picture. He sent his results to the production manager, who forwarded them to the public order office.

Snappy demands from the co-plaintiff

The suffrage agents appear unusually snappy. They seem to have prepared themselves well for the witness, keep on drilling, pointing out inconsistencies, pointing out his “considerable responsibility for the safety of the site and the visitors”. Nevertheless, the witness does not provide helpful answers.

A co-plaintiff attorney insistently asks about his memories of the time after the first death notices: “It is very difficult for me to understand that you do not even know what happened in this period”. That must have burned itself into the memory.

“Did you try to discuss any action?” The witness’s answer: “Unfortunately, I can not remember it.” This sentence is dozens of times. There is nothing to get here.

Day 137: Two witnesses and a statement

By Dominik Peters am July 31, 2019

“I like to help.” The witness already emphasized this several times yesterday . And indeed, the business economist, who is engaged by the Loveparade organizer as traffic planner, has prepared intensively for the second day of his interrogation. Again and again, he digs through a collection of notes on which he has noted down places and times: “I like to follow, if that is important to you”.

The questions of the defenders – an elusive topic-gathering – he answers remarkably patiently. Although this morning does not provide quantum quantum leaps in content, at the end the presiding judge explicitly expresses his thanks “also for the noticeable effort you have made.”

Defense attorney criticizes investigative authorities

This is followed by a committed statement from a defense lawyer: she knows important documents that did not play a role in the process. “That’s scandalous and that’s not possible.” Her criticism is directed against the investigative authorities.

The presiding judge resolutely responds: “That something is kept secret or not accessible is simply not correct.” Once again it is one of these refreshing moments – from an observer’s point of view – in which the process routine is broken.

Cameras “failed in the course of events”

The next witness is a now 39-year-old engineer. During his studies he worked in the security industry. He had just come to Duisburg two days before the Love Parade to see the grounds and his workplace in the Hoist skyscraper. He was not involved in planning the Love Parade.

On the day of the event, his task was to accept radio messages and to use the surveillance images “to calculate the filling level of the event area once per hour.”

Some cameras have “failed in the course of events” recalls the witness. He also remembers a chain of police and “that it was full, on the ramp”. The witness does not know much anymore. Who wants to blame him, nine years later?

Day 136: An economist for traffic planning

From local time Duisburg am July 30, 2019

By Dominik Peters

Back after a barely three-week break between hearings: A man in a light blue business shirt sits in the witness’s chair. Today he works in controlling at a medium-sized company. At the Loveparade 2010, he was on behalf of the promoter company as a freelancer to traffic issues, says the 41-year-old.

What qualified the graduate economist for this task, remains open. He had a similar job at the opening ceremony of the European Capital of Culture Ruhr2010, says the witness. But: I had no previous experience in traffic planning “. He attaches importance to having dealt only with “traffic”, but not “traffic law” issues.

“Auxiliary activities on the day of the event”

As a member of the “Transport Working Group”, he participated in the Loveparade, among other things, on site inspections, worked on a roadblock plan and a “traffic concept for arrival and departure”. On the day of the event, he only took on temporary jobs, but also “enjoyed the event, which I planned on, so to speak”. At the time of the accident, he was at the VIP area in use.

“Game nights with defendant” 

“I do not know much about the planning activities of my colleagues,” says the witness. “It was focused on his areas.” Interesting: The witness has further private contact with one of the accused. You meet “once or twice a week” at game evenings. The process is not an issue. “It’s important that we all relax a bit.”

Only at later demand of the presiding judge Mario Plein admits the witness to speak now and then “one or two sentences” with the defendant about the process. He had prepared intensively for his interrogation as a witness in the last few days on the basis of his documents. Tomorrow, he is to bring photos he took during and after the Loveparade on the event grounds.

Day 135: The insider

By Martin Teigeler on 10th July 2019Today’s witness is an exceptional phenomenon. In contrast to many rather taciturn appearances of other witnesses in the courtroom, he talks extensively and remembers many details about the disaster. The 44-year-old independent event technician, publisher and author gives an almost one-hour lecture on his experiences at the beginning of his statement, during and after the Loveparade 2010 in Duisburg.As an external consultant he was responsible for the technical control of the techno-floats. Already since Berlin times the man was present at the Loveparade – a real insider.

Known since childhood days

He reports that he had suffered from the Love Parade in Duisburg a post-traumatic stress disorder. It was not the first trauma in his life. When he was a child he drank turpentine and lost limbs as an adult in an accident at work, he says frankly about himself. The witness speaks in places so fast that he is asked by the judge to take it a little slower.Sometimes his remarks contain too much information: The witness knows one of the defendants, for example, since Kindestagen – who at that time had to sleep in a room with his brother or if there were separate children’s rooms does not really matter in the Cause Loveparade. Nevertheless, he tells of, inter alia, to explain his rather distant relationship with today’s defendant.

The absence of “state authority”

Nevertheless, the family man gives interesting insights into the inner workings of the Loveparade organizer crew. So he reports that it was “not desired” and “not productively promoted”, if one has made proposals beyond its scope. That’s why he only took care of the floats. His opinion about the tunnel and access to the party grounds was not desired by the production management. He describes himself as a “troublemaker” at work. His task, the technical acceptance of the floats, was not suitable to be “Best Buddy” with everyone.The witness describes an important difference to the Loveparade events in Essen and Dortmund in 2007 and 2008. In Duisburg in 2010, the city regulatory office accompanied the event less closely than in the other two Ruhr cities: “There was a lack of state authority.” He has in Duisburg “missing”.The trial against the remaining three defendants continues after a brief summer break on 30 July.

Day 134: The burglary

By Martin Teigeler on July 9, 2019

In the Loveparade process, the series of witnesses continues from the staff of the organizer.

The 39-year-old woman from Essen in 2010 was the contact person for residents on the route to the Techno site in Duisburg. She has already taken on this task at the 2007 and 2008 parades in Essen and Dortmund, says the cultural manager and dramaturge.

To this day, she is privately closely associated with old Loveparade colleagues. Her husband – he was already on the witness stand – was at the event nine years ago also in the team of Loveparade maker Rainer Schaller . She works in a café that operates one of the defendants in Essen. She even states to be the “face” of the cafe. The owner did not want to go public – that was already the case before the Love Parade disaster.

Memory gaps and tears

In addition, this defendant is the godfather of one of her children. Another defendant, who lives near Berlin, even stays overnight with her in Essen on the trial days – ie regularly since the end of 2017. She also cares for the ex-defendant of Lopavent, against whom the procedure was suspended because of low guilt a “friendship” for many years, says the woman.

A terribly nice family, so this old Love Parade clique, you might think. One also knows each other from other events of the Capital of Culture year Ruhr.2010. Noticeable also on this day of the trial: While the defendants make use of their right to be silent in court since the beginning of the trial, many witnesses of the organizer company say little to nothing in their own way: no reminder, hardly any details – so it is said, for example Testimony of 39-year-olds more than once. Sometimes she smiles sheepishly when she remembers without success.

Even as Judge Mario Plein admonishes them (“You must.You must strive to remember”), almost nothing comes to important issues of the process like: Who planned access to the site via Tunnel and Ramp, where on July 24th 2010 came to mass panic?

When it comes to the sometimes agonizingly tough questioning about the day of the disaster, the tears come to the witness. It’s amazing that later it just bubbles out of her as a sideline attorney questions her about other projects. She suddenly knows many details.


The witness still reports of a “weird” incident in April 2011. One of the later defendants brought a laptop and hard drive to her home – so a friend can make a backup copy. When she and her husband drove off for an hour, strangers broke open the front door and stole their laptop and hard drive. Otherwise, nothing was stolen from the burglary in the apartment, the witness said. The case is still not cleared up.

Day 133: A short day

By Doro Blome-Müller am 3rd of July 2019

The witness lives in Berlin and joined the Lopavent in 2006. As an office manager, as she explains. At the Loveparade in Duisburg she was, as in the previous parades in Dortmund and Essen, among other things for the VIP care responsible. About any VIPs, however, is not spoken today.

One manager, two employees

The now 40-year-old and her supervisor, the “Creative Director”, a former defendant, were the only permanent employees of Lopavent GmbH under CEO Schaller. She had had little to do with the preparation of the Love Parade in Duisburg and had come to Duisburg only one month before the event for the preparations, reports the witness.

Hesitation and reflection

In the questioning by the judge, the woman has to think again and again, every now and then she also has big word finding difficulties. I can not tell if she has them because she prefers not to tell certain things – like who exactly was responsible for what – or if she’s just upset. There is no pattern in the subjects that lack words. And like many witnesses before her, the former VIP attendant has to fit many questions. But I do not have the impression that it is walling.

“The party went on”

Their description of the day is pretty close and also the follow-up of the judge brings little more to the light. She talks about the VIP area being at the emergency exits and people trying to get over it. “I was told to open the gates to let people in because the pressure on the entrances was so great. Then we heard that there had been an accident in the tunnel, but that the floats continue. I felt a bit helpless, I was at the other end of the venue, it seemed like nothing had happened. “

No further questions

Judge Plein is already in front of lunch break with his interrogation by and neither public prosecutor, nor co-plaintiffs have more questions. Not even the representatives of the defendants and so the meeting adjourned to the next week, the witness is dismissed.

The enigmatic permanent viewer

When I leave the Congress Center, the expert sits on a bench with two other participants in the process. They puzzle who the man is who has just passed them and what he is doing here. The gray-haired gentleman sits in the rows of spectators on almost every day of the trial and writes partly eagerly. On the way to the tram I catch up with him and ask – curiosity is part of my job profile. He said he did not drive to Duisburg at the time because it was so hot. And now it interests him in principle. Well then.

Day 132: “He says and I do”

By Dominik Peters am 2 July 2019

Yesterday, the Loveparade celebrated its 30th anniversary. It started on 01.07.1989 as a small peace demo of the West-Berlin techno scene. It ended on 24.07.2010 in Duisburg – as a commercialized marketing event, whose visit had to pay 21 people with their lives. The search for the legally guilty continues.

The witness, now 54 years old and carpenter, comes in short cargo trousers and a brown track jacket in the courtroom. She begins her appearance defiantly, leans back in the witness chair. Bent to the front of the table microphone, it is uncomfortable, she says with a girlish, bright voice. “You are not here for pleasure,” warns the judge.  Only then is it about content. 

“He says and I do”

She has participated in the Loveparade almost every year since 1989, says the witness. In 2010, she was involved as an assistant to one of the accused Lopavent employees. “He says and I do,” she describes her relationship with the Technical Director. In essence, she had checked the construction of fences and containers in the run-up to the event.

The witness is not very good at “the three nice employees” of the Duisburg construction office. They demanded fences in places where they did not make sense in their eyes. Nevertheless, she has implemented the demands. She did not want to jeopardize the approval of the event.

“Eye and ear in the square”

On the day of the event, she was in contact with the technical director by radio, says the witness. She had been her “down his eye and his ear in the square”. What exactly he did in the office, she did not know. When the entrance was in the afternoon, you did not look for radio contact for a while. The two spoke again when the first reports of dead and injured people leaked out. 

Details of the event, the judge of the witness must laboriously pull out of his nose. Time and again, she relies on not knowing things exactly, not having seen or being able to orientate herself on site plans. She is allowed to go in the afternoon.

Tomorrow: VIP supervisor

Tomorrow will probably fall one or the other celebrity name. After announcement of the court, the next witness on behalf of the organizer should have been “responsible for the personal care of the VIP guests.”

Due to other commitments we have not been able to follow the trial as closely as we would like, due to this, we are providing translations from a dedicated to the daily process of the trial.


19th June

Little knowledge

The attorney in front of the hall door has set herself up for a long day: in the cool bag store second breakfast and lunch, in another bag something to read. It is worth noting how much security the court is conducting for this process – 30 colleagues are working here in the Duesseldorf branch office of the Duisburg district court, the woman estimates. But if there is a doctrine of misfortune, then it is: In case of doubt, more security than too little in the wrong places.

Usual patterns

Where exactly at the Loveparade 2010 too little was done for security, the answer to this question, we have come closer to the impression by the witness today. True to its original line, the defense tries to focus its attention on police chains as the cause of the deadly crush. The witness – even a police officer – sees things differently. “We slipped into a situation that was not planned. We had to deviate from our order plan. We’ve been thrown into a situation we could not prepare for. “

The trauma

In the review, there had been consensus among colleagues to do the right thing. The witness is to be noted that he was in the midst of the deadly crush on July 24, 2010. Asked what he has experienced concretely, the gestures and facial expressions of the otherwise quiet man is driving. He may have processed the experiences – he probably will never forget them. Because of the events at the Loveparade no one has become disabled from his train, he says. “I know that we have offered all the possibilities of aftercare. Whether you use them, everyone has to decide for themselves. “

view in the future

The witness seems to have little relevance for the court, and after less than three hours he is released. For the court, the big question then arises: what happens to the process? From possible attitude without end-of-year requirements from the ranks of the defense to considerations, in what form and whether the appraiser should be heard, the proposals are varied. The judge wants to think about it.

18th June

Insecure witnesses

The trial starts with the court reading handwritten notes of the witness dated July 24, 2010. He sat in the security center of Lopavent for an involved security company. The mood in the morning of the event had been good, they had exchanged about former Loveparades. “It was already looking forward to the sight of bare-headed women,” it says.

Note or log?

Subsequent to this handwritten minutes and other documents provided by the witness, the defense lawyers plunge. For more than two hours, the solicitor of the former Lopavent security chief asks detailed questions about times and wording. The note: “16:00: All cameras are destroyed” keeps us feeling hours and recurring. In the machine-generated fair copy of the witness, this formulation no longer appears. And I’m beginning to wonder if I might even be embarrassed having to explain my case notes to the court in a lawsuit. Because meticulously I hold only the quotes here, everything else I write so that it serves me as a souvenir support, and because I am not so careful on precise formulations.

Uncertainty at the first witness

For the other defense attorneys, the interview seems to me, according to my impression, mainly to be confusing, if not unbelievable, the witness. One can not blame them – said the witness in his statement last week but one or the other, which was not necessarily relieved for the defendants.
In any case, Judge Plein is increasingly annoyed that the survey is also so extensive in terms of time. Finally, another witness, another police officer, is summoned for today.


He only comes into the room after a late lunch break and describes very briefly what he experienced on the day of the accident. Among other things, that he was responsible for collecting one of the three controversial police ropes and that when the crush on the ramp became lethal, he stood with his back to the tunnel wall, thinking, “I do not know if I’ll see my children again will!”

Uncertainty at the second witness

In the subsequent questioning by the judge, unlike many of his colleagues, he often has to admit that he can not or only vaguely remember. In one case, however, this is not surprising, because the judge interrogates him extensively after a police witness of another witness after a meeting in which he remembered not participated. He had already gone to Duisburg on July 22 to get an impression of the Loveparad terrain. For the final meeting on 23 July he could not: He had been at a funeral.

14th June

“That was too dangerous for us”

On today’s trial day the Duisburg plant manager of a large security company is in the witness stand. At the Loveparade 2010, he was responsible for the deployment of about 100 police officers of his company. He spent the day in the security center; in the office where two of the defendants sat. Surveillance videos should be viewed live on screens and information and commands exchanged over the radio with the staff throughout the site.

“I know the area like the back of my hand” – a local security expert

The 61-year-old reports that he grew up only 500 meters from the Karl-Lehr-Tunnel, the place of misfortune. That’s why he knows the area very well. When his security company was asked by the organizer if she did not want to take over the admission controls, he quickly decided against it, he says. “Taking care of the separation systems was too dangerous for us,” he recalls. He could not have imagined that hundreds of people would stream into the tunnel and his employees would stand there in the middle of the street.

The emergency route was “talked away” with the fire department

But then they had agreed with Lopavent. About 100 trained security forces of his company were posted at various emergency exits of the party grounds. These were further away from the ramp and the later place of misfortune. But things did not go right there either, says the witness.

During a pre-inspection, he realized that not everything had been built as planned at the emergency exits. There was no way for ambulances. The organizer knowingly waived an escape route. On request, a defendant assured that this was agreed with the fire department. The rescue route was “talked away”.

This is not the only statement of the witness that turns out to be unfair to the defendants.

Was the security center staffed throughout?

The witness says that the defendants “were not present in the security center for hours”. He suspected that they were on the site.

Unrelated and not related by marriage

The 61-year-old manager has so far made a sovereign and independent impression. Unlike many other witnesses who testified in the past few days of the trial, he is not affiliated with the defendants for business or pleasure. The defense will have the opportunity to question the witness next Tuesday.

6th June

Stunned in the Great Hall

In the other words, Judge Plein, in other words, the trial day, could have saved the night in the hotel, some of whom had traveled far and wide. After almost an hour, that is already over. According to the judge, the findings of the morning were so manageable that they could have been won yesterday afternoon.


Because the night in the hotel has changed nothing in the attitude of the witness: “Can not remember,” he says to just about every question that concerns the Love Parade 2010. The attitude and facial expression of the man with the unmistakable language of the German language essentially express one thing: defense and closed-mindedness.

Starting at the bottom

A task such as the Loveparade – in the security center monitor monitors, sparks and assess critical situations – the witness had never before. And never again afterwards, he admits. But he is still confident that he has been qualified enough to do so: He started out in the industry at the age of 17 and worked his way up from the bottom. As a bouncer, as a folder, as a builder.

Raised eyebrows

The council and disbelief of the sergeant’s representatives in the face of what little of the witness can actually experience is almost palpable. He was friends with one of the defendants, says the 50-year-old. Since it was decided that this would be charged, but there was no contact. The raised eyebrows of almost everyone present in the courtroom express considerable doubts – not only on this statement of the man.

A reprimand for the sideline representative

“Now do not be so stupid,” says one of the lawyers to the witness. That brings him a – justified – mild reprimand of the judge. To say something like that was not alright, “in spite of the partial comprehensible wonderment about the memory of the witness”.

After one hour, the sideline lawyers give up, and the defense has no questions. The witness is dismissed. But not because there were no questions left ….

5th June

“I feel ripped off by you”

“I would like to ask you to take the matter extremely seriously.” After only 20 minutes, the presiding judge first sees himself called to reprimand the witness. “A blanket, I can not remember and then we’re done, that’s not here.”

In fact, the man in the red shirt responds remarkably monosyllabic. He speaks in short sentences, which he often does not finish. Record-breaking often, he says the sentence that witnesses say in the process so often: “Can not I remember it.” That’s his right, guesses can not use the court after all. Only: The today 50-year-old bus driver does not even seem to strive for memories. He blocks.

As a radio operator in the security center

On the day of the Loveparade 2010 he sat on behalf of the organizer company as a radio operator in the security center. His qualification for the job: A Bundeswehr training as a telecommunications expert as well as several years of experience in the event sector. The request for the Loveparade in Duisburg had reached him via one of the accused Lopavent employees, says the witness. “We’ve known each other for a while.”

His version of the Loveparade collaboration is briefly told: The day before the event, there was a site inspection. Not more. He had not received concrete instructions in his tasks. He had to monitor the terrain on screens and operate the radio. His view of the monitor had been “so general”. What exactly he should watch, he can not explain.

No answers

Not only the presiding judge seems disenchanted at the end of his questioning about the appearance of the witness. The chief prosecutor claims to be resigned to having “no more questions”. A plaintiff attorney finally tries to help the witness with video recordings on the jumps. In vain. The witness now leans back with folded arms: “What is no longer there, is no longer there. It was not yesterday. “

The plaintiffs’ lawyers are clear: “I feel ripped off by you,” says one. It gets loud in the courtroom. “I assume that you hold back a great deal of what you know,” adds another lawyer. Tomorrow the witness has to come back.

24th May

The liaison officer without connection

The former police liaison officer at the Lopavent Security Center is 37 years old today. He looks much younger to me. Many things from his previous statements to the police, he can not remember today.

The liaison man

The witness reports that he went to work at the Lopavent security center at noon. His task had been to pass on information that came together at the organizer and were of importance to the police. He describes his work until the accident as follows: For example, if the organizers of the organizers reported that they had found drugs in a visitor, obstructed firefighters or rescue workers in their work by visitors or fights emerged, the information in the appropriate departments the security center. The witness then passed this information on to his senior management colleagues. These then sent the appropriate officials to the job site.

So far, so good, I think. But then the question arises as to why the witness did not pass on information about the escalating situation in the tunnel in exactly this sense, before the catastrophe occurred. Or why this information has not come to the right place? But today’s trial day does not provide a clear answer.

No direct line

The witness explains that he was in telephone contact with his colleagues, as far as the partially overloaded mobile phone network allowed. For his activity he brought along a telephone list with the police contacts and two cell phones, one official and one private. In addition, he had been provided with a radio for communication with the fire department. The evidence of his service cell’s individual evidence seems to support his testimony, although the witness said last week that today’s liaison officer could not make contact with the police. From the itemized evidence, it appears that there were multiple calls from his mobile phone between 2:30 pm and 1:00 am. These calls usually went to the senior management.

So he did not talk directly to the officials in the tunnel, at the inlets or the ramp. Besides, the witness was not a decision maker but only a liaison official. Even if the Lopavent staff in the security center told him that, for example, a chain of police should be disbanded, the witness could not have made the decision. The information he had, if he came through, always forwarded.

“Subtle antipathy”

The working atmosphere in the security center was initially harmonious and relaxed. But today the police officer said, “After the incident, the tide turned. I felt a subtle antipathy. “He had worked the misfortune for himself. How exactly, he can not explain. He sometimes looks a bit helpless, like someone who could not fulfill his job – like a liaison officer who could not connect.

17th May

The sticky mass

As a kid, I fell asleep with gum in my mouth. When I woke up, this pink thing stuck in my hair. For ages, I tried to save the sticky strands of hair. Some of my hair was pulled out while trying, others stuck and glued and stuck. No matter how much effort I gave myself.

Listening to the witness, expecting to gain insight into the process, feels like the futile struggle with the sticky mass of those days.

The futile hope for knowledge

The witness is a 55-year-old man who is entrusted with security and order tasks at major events. He is a graduate engineer for event technology, at the time of the Loveparade 2010 he is still the master of event technology. It’s the second trial day in court for him. Today he is questioned by the prosecutor, the co-plaintiff and the defense lawyers.

Reading what position he took at Loveparade 2010 raises hope of gaining insights into what happened on the day of the disaster at the security center. But the “technical director of security at the Loveparade” (as he puts it in the bill he made a day after the accident to the company Lopavent himself) has nothing enlightening to report for me.

The attitude of the witness

The answers of the witness will eventually be predictable for me. I can almost say something to her. “Can not I remember that?” … “Then it must have been like this.” … “I suspect that was the case.” … “I do not remember that anymore.” …

An adjutant lawyer wants to know what happened after the accident, whether there were conversations among employees, when the witness had left Duisburg, how long he had been awake, whether he had slept at all after the catastrophe. Many Lopavent witnesses testified that they spent weeks dealing with the misfortune and sharing it. The witness returns to the question that he no longer knows that. That was eight and a half years ago. He could not even say how he had slept last week.

Not just any day – Not just any night – Not just any event

In my ears that sounds like scorn and mockery and I’m glad that no relatives are present in the statement of this “event and security expert”. Because this is not about any event eight and a half years ago. It’s about the day 21 people lost their lives.

It sounds particularly unpleasant for me when the witness breathes while answering into the microphone. This “pffft” is supposed to demonstrate that he does not care much for the questions that are asked of him.

Interesting prospects

For me, there is no explanation of this testimony. But an impression. And this sticky feeling of a mass that does not want to be unraveled anymore. The next day of the trial in a week, the policeman is loaded, of which the witness has claimed that he should have had as a liaison officer neither a radio nor a working cell phone with it. It will be interesting to compare these two statements.

10th May

“Application for a criminal case”

The witness is today a graduate engineer for theater and event technology. At the time of the Loveparade, he was a master of event technology and worked for the security department of Lopavent. On the day of the Love Parade he sat in the security center.

Old friends

The 55-year-old was hired for the Love Parade in Duisburg by his friend and best man, one of the defendants. He has often worked with the defendant, the former Lopavent security chief for the Love Parade. He says his role was that of the assistant. He had also been active for the Love Parade in Berlin. Right at the beginning of the trial, the judge clearly points out to him that he is here obliged to tell the truth. But over the course of the day, doubts about its credibility are repeatedly voiced in court.

Witness: responsible for security clear from the outset

The witness reports that he already recognized the tunnel problem at the first inspection. However, he was assured by the Lopavent that the city would ensure that visitors were guided from the station in such a way that there was no pressure on the entrances and in the tunnel.

The question from his point of view, the witness has clarified quickly. Everything started with the police chains. However, in the course of the testimony, it becomes clear to me that the witness, due to a lack of communication between the security center and those responsible in the tunnel, had no knowledge of the things that had happened in the tunnel before the police chain was formed. What the crowd-manager and senior police officer said about the situation until they decided to move police records seems not to have been noticed in the security center where the witness was sitting on the day, even after the disaster.

Was there pressure on the Lopavent?

The testimony of the witness is tough. The judge gives him his eight-year-old police statements. Only a few pieces of evidence, such as security center photos and a list, are being introduced. This is the problem with all Lopavent witnesses. Few things are so documented as on the city side. The witness says that he had asked to hire someone to keep track of him in the security center on the day of the event. But this was rejected for cost reasons.

From the initially planned 1,400 people, who were to be used as folders on the day of the event, had become 924 in the end, also for reasons of economy, the witness confirms. He is also said to have encouraged the floats, so trucks with music, on the site not so close to the ramp. Because the visitors of a love parade would have come from his experience only to see the floats. That was his opinion at the time. The problem: When the float line led past the entrance to the site, people stopped at the entrance, ie at the ramp. But his proposal to change the route, was rejected for cost reasons.

Was this a joke, or serious, Mr. Judge?

At the end the judge gives the witness the bill which he put to the Lopavent at that time. In it he calls himself “technical director for the area of ​​security at the Loveparade”. Judge Mario Plein then allows himself the remark that this sounds like a “letter of application for a criminal case”. A bittersweet smirk goes through the hall. Is there actually someone on the witness stand who belongs to the dock, I wonder? The questioning of the witness will continue next week.

8th May

Gorny, Rüttgers and Klitschko

The witness has to apply a “correction”. The ex-defendant says that, contrary to yesterday’s information, he spoke with one of the remaining three defendants about the new opinion on the Love Parade disaster. It was a question of whether dimensions on the ramp head were correctly represented in the report. He had no recollection of the defendant, says the witness: “Like a board in the head.” His lawyer had reminded him that he had once told of it.
An interview

The now 47-year-old creative director of the Duisburg Love Parade 2010 sat until February even in the dock. For 14 months he was silent in the process. Then the case was set against him because of low guilt. Now he is the third day of negotiations in a row as a witness speech and answer.
After the court is the prosecutor’s turn. The prosecution is also having a hard time finding out something new from the witness to responsibilities for the deadly throng of tunnel and ramp to the party grounds.
Attorney Uwe Muhlhoff asks the ex-defendant if he knew in the afternoon of the disaster of congestion in the access area. The witness says no. Then the prosecutor will play a video in the courtroom. In the TV clip from 24 July 2010, the witness is seen, as he reports in an interview, it was “already quite full” and you had to close the tunnel system partly. The witness can not remember the interview – and also does not explain how and why he had information about an overcrowding.
With important people in boxing

Not criminally relevant, but interesting again are the reports of the witness on the history of the Love Parade. How “partners” from the Ruhr area were invited to a Klitschko boxing match in Gelsenkirchen in the summer of 2009, for example Hanns-Ludwig Brauser, Managing Director of Wirtschaftsförderung metropoleruhr. Also (today’s NRW-Minister of State) Stephan Holthoff-Pförtner was there.
The then NRW Prime Minister Jürgen Rüttgers (CDU) he also met, says the witness. At a standing reception in the Dortmunder “U”. Dieter Gorny, one of the artistic directors of the Ruhr Capital of Culture 2010, made her known.
The small snippets to parades before the parade make it clear that organizer Lopavent left nothing to chance in the implementation – at least when it comes to supple decision makers from politics, business and administration to convince for the parade. On the day of the unfortunate, the respondent met the then North Rhine-Westphalia Minister of the Interior Ralf Jäger (SPD) around 5 pm in the VIP area. At the request of the defense, the witness will soon send pictures to it.

7th May

A stupid situation

Judge Mario Plein admonishes the witness to the truth. He knew this was “a stupid situation,” says Plein, but he had to tell the truth in the witness box, otherwise he could be “severely punished”. The poll reached a crucial point after about five hours of the second day: what does the former Loveparade employee know about the concrete role of the remaining three defendants (all also Lopavent people) in the fatal catastrophe on 24 July 2010? If you believe the witness, not much.
After 14 months of trial, the case against the 47-year-old was recently closed – as well as against six employees of the city of Duisburg. “The cessation of proceedings is not linked to a finding of individual guilt,” the court said.
“Difficult to understand”

The ex-defendant, whom Loveparade boss Rainer Schaller described as his “Head of Organization”, is accompanied by the lawyer, who also defended him. He is dressed dark. When talking he usually holds a pen in his hand.
To the places of crowding (tunnel and ramp, so that zone in which 21 people died) he says little enlightening – despite reminder of the judge. That was not “his topic”, says the marketing expert. Even in his time as a defendant he had not talked to the other three Lopavent defendants about their knowledge of “neuralgic” (Plein) points such as the ramparts. “Hard to understand,” says the judge.
Even today, the witness has to do his own business with a defendant professionally – one is also friends. Years ago, he and an other defendant intensively discussed an expert opinion. He has not talked to him about the new report, he emphasizes. With the third defendant, there was only small talk.
This “shabby city”

In more detail, the witness describes his tasks in the planning phase of the Love Parade. The statements are informative, because they illustrate the time of the Technoparade in the Ruhr area, which was characterized by PR-speaking. In the European Capital of Culture year 2010, Duisburg should definitely show that the area is a “metropolitan region”. Therefore, the parade should necessarily to Duisburg, in this “shabby city”, as it says in a court-read mail from a defendant in March 2010.
For the event concept he had contributed only the “superstructure”, says the witness. Others were responsible for the safety. During a tour of the area before the event, he did not even show a larger group of tunnels and ramps. That was not an attraction point, he says.

3rd May

From the dock to the witness stand

This is a board! Aged two hours, the witness talks about his memories of the Love Parade 2010. Sure, this witness knows how the game runs here in the courtroom. What he says now, you will probably not ask him later. The 47-year-old ex-employee of the organizer Lopavent sat himself until a few weeks ago at the dock.

He started his free lecture in 2006. At that time he was responsible for music selection at Schaller’s McFit Studios. Later he planned the Loveparades in Essen and Dortmund; a “great success,” he sums up. After the Loveparade in Bochum 2009 was canceled, because there were “always new security concerns”, the plans for Duisburg began.

Responsible only for creative area

The witness remembers many preparatory meetings and the “bright excitement in the production office” on the day of the disaster. Only: Despite all the detail, little tangible evidence can be drawn from his statement. His much discussed function of executive director can not be filled with life. He was just on a buffer level between production management and Schaller, he says.

For financial questions, Schaller always had the last word, says the witness. He can answer security questions only superficially. Again and again he relies on having been responsible for the creative field. Even with many detailed demands of the presiding judge, he remains guilty of clarifying answers. “May be that …”, “I would guess”, “I can not remember”.

Break with Schaller

The witness describes the days after the accident as “unbelievably exhausting”. “We manically watched these videos to understand what the processes were like.” Since he did not want to go to the cameras after the accident – “Mc Fit does not belong to me, Lopavent does not belong to me” – it had come to a break with Rainer Schaller.

The witness does not seem to feel uncomfortable in his role. He talks and does not give the impression to consciously withhold facts. And yet, the aha moments hoped for in the run-up to-date will be over today. Maybe he will save up for the upcoming week. Then the court will continue its questioning.

2nd May

“Had” and “if”

Today we continue with the policeman, who was involved in the preparation, but spent the day itself to a large extent in the delivery room. The court has already asked his questions to the witness. Today it continues with the other parties.

Many of his answers begin with “would” and “if”. If he had been in action at noon, he would have shut down the isolation equipment, says the witness. His use, we now know that, but he has only begun when the disaster had already happened.

“City tip wanted the Love Parade”

The witness answers questions about the preparation patiently and in detail. Doubts about the security had not penetrated, neither to the responsible for the Capital of Culture Year Ruhr 2010, nor to the then Mayor of Duisburg Adolf Sauerland: “There was no doubt for me that he wanted the Love Parade takes place,” says the witness.

He describes the fire department as “very invisible, to put it mildly.” He explains that “the problems we have described have not subjectively reached the fire department.” Normally, the fire department and the police would work closely together. That was not the case with the Loveparade plans.

“Stopped thinking about it”

“But at some point I stopped thinking about how to find the terrain now,” says the witness. He then started to prepare the mission. He considers the concept of the police, which he developed in preparatory meetings, to be correct: “My impression was that everything had been prepared reasonably and seriously.”

One could now ask why he had not been on duty all the time, the policeman says unasked. He begins to justify himself: “But you do not get children so often in life.”

“That’s where the bile comes from.”

A defender wants to know why he has not controlled more, whether agreements are respected. The witness answers annoyed: “Since the bile comes to me a bit high.” One must also be able to trust sometimes.

Everything is said in the afternoon. The parties have no more questions, the witness is dismissed for the time being. Tomorrow will be exciting: Then a Lopavent employee is invited as a witness, who sat until February still in the dock.

26th April

You should recognize them in their actions

The witness is a police officer and was supposed to lead the operation on the day of the Love Parade. However, he only arrived there when the accident had already happened: on the morning of July 24, 2010, his wife contracted and he remained with her until the delivery of his son in the hospital. The assignment was taken over by his deputy.
He first learned of his misfortune from his mother, says Bochum. He had called after birth and after congratulation she said: “I’m glad that you are not in Duisburg today. There have already been ten dead. “Only then he had driven to the event site.

That was a demolition area for me

The witness was present during the preparations. Also, because he already had the police responsibility for the event area in Dortmund. And he says: He and his two colleagues, who took care of the routing to the site, had been very skeptical when they met there for the Ortstermin. “I did not imagine that there would be any dead, but I already expected that there would be problems. I did not feel good about it, “he recalls. And even the ramp they would have immediately seen as problematic. The colleague had designed a scenario that later also came in: “The visitors have to climb the ramp first, from which they do not see anything of the terrain and then drive up there the floats (music trucks) and the people stop. In addition, the ramp is actually too narrow. “

100 folders that people “talk away”

The Lopavent said back then, it would be folders – in the phrases called Pusher – used, the people “talk away”, so move to go further. And 100 people, alone at this point. They were not there on the day of the event. And also a promised, with normal vehicles passable, Rundweg around the area was not present. Although the organizer made a professional impression on him, however, he had not complied with agreements in Dortmund. “In their deeds you should recognize them,” quotes the today 60-year-old from the Gospel of John. “In Dortmund were less folders than agreed and also fences were there partly not as set up as promised.”

Detailed inquiries

The witness, understandably after nine years, can not remember much of the details the judge wants to know after him. And after the lunch break some defenders ask how long the judge is going to negotiate today – on Friday. “Until 19 o’clock,” jokes Plein. In fact, it’s just before four o’clock. Next week Bochum must come back again, so that the other negotiators can ask their questions. It could be exciting on Friday. Then a former Lopavent employee is questioned again. He knows his way around the Duesseldorf branch of the Duisburg district court, because he sat on the dock until the 6th of February.

25th April

Joint work-up

It is the second day of the trial for a former Lopavent employee. The 48-year-old coordinated the work on the site. She was involved in the construction and dismantling of the event. The first part of her testimony took place 14 days ago. Therefore, today it is about what happened after the disaster and who held what tasks in the company Lopavent.

Friends and colleagues

The witness is friends with two defendants and other former employees who have already testified in the process. The extent to which she answers in an unbiased way is questioned by the court, but can not fully be understood. She is in regular contact with her former colleagues and they have been talking about the events for nine years at each meeting. But it’s never about content of the process, she says.
In the course of her statement, she contradicts herself on this point. The witness refers to things that her friend has already testified in court. However, closer scrutiny by the judge should not be relevant in terms of content, she says.

The relationships within the former Lopavent crew remain inscrutable to me. Well-known, friends, employees, freelancers, clients, contractors … Sometimes the company pays staff to lawyers. Then she gets over them. In my opinion, the witness remains vague in her statements. Question marks and a strange feeling are spreading. Not only with me. During the breaks, I also hear doubts about the credibility of the witness during the breaks.

What about the responsibility?

It quickly becomes clear that the “Site Manager” coordinator at the Loveparade site no longer has much to say to us and that the gain in knowledge of her statement for the process is probably exhausted.

But then the witness is questioned by the defendant of the production manager. He presents various e-mails that deal with refuse containers, the preparation of the site, toilet facilities, entry times for media, etc. Always with the question of whether his client has arranged these things or not. Roughly it is probably about to prove what the defendant was not responsible. Because he must have delegated a number of tasks and these must have been decided by others and implemented.

It is a tough questioning. The light in the process room is dimmed, various e-mails, such as those about Dixi-Klo orders, are projected and read on the wall. And I wonder: was the defendant involved in planning the toilets and what does that have to do with 21 dead?
Even if it seems banal or disproportionate to me, it is the subject of the hearing. The point is to clarify who has had what tasks, made decisions and thus exerted what influence on the event.
In each company tasks are delegated daily. But what about responsibility? Does it also slice and distribute? And then, in the end, are all a bit guilty and not so completely? For me, the court has already answered this question after the legal discussion of 16.1.2019 with “yes”. And here, too, this topic floats like a dark cloud over the questioning.

No deviations

The witness believes that she knows the cause of the disaster. Like all Lopavent employees who have commented on this issue so far, she believes that the police are the cause of the disaster.

I’ve never heard of a Lopavent employee claiming otherwise. Maybe that has something to do with the fact that I have the impression that there must have been a close and joint “work-up” of the disaster with the organizers.

11th April

Hard ride

Again says a witness from the team of Loveparade organizer Rainer Schaller. The 48-year-old was no longer a freshman at the Technoparade 2010 in Duisburg. Since 2003 she has worked at Loveparade events (first in Berlin, then in the Ruhr area). At the old freight yard in Duisburg she took care of all sorts of things, such as external service providers such as Telekom or the toilet service. “Site Coordination” is the name in Event Manager German.

At the beginning, it is customary in the trial for witnesses to freely report their memories of the Love Parade disaster. The statements of the witness to this are so monosyllabic and superficial that the presiding judge Mario Plein speaks quickly admonitory words. May she try to remember.

Is there someone stupid?

The witness is asked about her knowledge of the remaining three defendants (all old Lopavent colleagues of hers). One of the men praises them as “dutiful”, “sovereign”. But to questions about the exact activities of the defendants, she hardly gets a straight sentence out, but expresses itself vaguely and evasively. Also observers ask themselves: Is there someone stupid?

“What exactly do you not understand by the question?” Says Judge Plein. The witness looks nervous, but also aggressive. She interrupts the judge several times. Plein does not like that at all.

The judge urgently warns her against a “hard ride” if she continues like this. Please do not “block” it. “That would be fatal,” he adds, interrupting the testimony visibly annoyed for a few minutes.

Decisions on “common sense”

In the short break, the witness acts touched. Nervously, she rubs her face with one hand. A male companion talks quietly to her.

As the story goes on, the witness replies in more detail – but at critical points is still imprecise. The question of who was responsible for the construction of the ailing freight yard site for the techno event concrete responsibility, she seems to be uncomfortable. There were no superiors, she says. One had decided in a longer “process” together – after “common sense”. Concrete responsible persons? None.

The witness replies several times to the judge: “I can not tell you that.” If you have questions about what has actually been changed and rebuilt on the site before the Love Parade, then she can remember an amazing amount of details.

On the day of the event, she watched the catastrophe only from a distance, the witness states. Your statement is not finished yet. On April 25th she has to face the questions of the court again.

10th April

Doubts about a witness: Really ill from the Love Parade?

In the process, the last co-plaintiff says. He was with his daughter (4) in Duisburg, today is seriously ill. Through the Love Parade?

This man is probably one of the most prominent among the survivors of the Duisburg Love Parade, he has made himself to. Served as a mouthpiece, as a champion, as a carer for the victims, for almost nine years. But now he does not want anymore. No more arguing, no longer worrying about others, not even talking about it anymore, but this Wednesday he has to: The 44-year-old is a witness in the Düsseldorf process.

They had doubts in the mess hall, where the process has been going for nearly a year and a half, that he will come this time. So many times has the man from Sprockhövel canceled, was considered unable to negotiate. But this time he appears: Too late, very slowly and bent, he enters the room, in his jacket pocket a box of sedative. He remains indecisively in front of the judge’s bench, sits down hesitantly, buries his head in his hands, cries a lot. He is the very last witness from the ranks of the co-plaintiffs; it has been around for a year to the people in the run and on the day of the Love Parade.

Through a side entrance to the festival area

He was also there, says the 44-year-old, it was a coincidence: his father had taken him to Duisburg that day, he did not want to the Love Parade, but then he went to look. Someone had let him through a side entrance to the grounds because he had his little daughter with him, that was four at the time. They looked from a distance to the music cars, wanted to go again, but that did not work. “You can not get out of here, you have to go down the road,” a police officer said and pointed to the ramp. The place where later 21 people died in the crowd.

The witness tells how he fell into an embankment, accompanying a second, strange child, carrying his daughter on his shoulders. How full it was, “it will be better soon,” someone said, but that was not true. “It’s getting tighter and tighter,” says the 44-year-old, later asking the judge to say “narrow” less often. As a doctor, who accompanies him as a reviewer, he has already advised to take another calming pill. He pushed his way through the crowd with the words: “I have a child,” continues the statement, in the tunnel had flown a football, drove a car with blue lights, the people had bellowed: “That was so pig-horny. “

There is no sound in his memory

However, that does not fit with what the witness says: in his memory everything is quiet. No noise. He knows that can not be, but he has stopped trying to make the pictures fit. “I’ve been trying to sort it out for nine years, but I can not handle it.” He does not want to “tell anyone else what people have told me, I have no sound, I do not recognize one.” He knows what he knows of thousands of movie minutes that he has watched again and again since then. His own, the reduced story, however, which has a big hole somewhere in the middle, he tells exactly the same for years. She was on TV, she was in the newspaper, even in this one. She goes always the same, although people also cursed him for it: “They threw me shit at the door”, reported him to the youth welfare office, because he took a kindergarten child to the Love Parade.

However, the lawyers doubt: A defender of a former defendant released in January has filed a criminal complaint. He believes that the man had been wrongfully included in the ranks of the co-plaintiffs. What’s more, he was not at the Love Parade. That would be fraud, the public prosecutor’s office identifies in two procedures. In fact, the 44-year-old has twice been to other major events after the Duisburg Technoparty, in “Ruhr in Love” and at the Nürburgring, but every time was the “gone wrong”.

Club work out of the fear of being alone

Medical certificates and reports certify anxiety and panic attacks, sleep disorders and a post-traumatic stress disorder. Four years after the Loveparade, the father of the family suffered a severe heart attack and had to undergo multiple surgeries. Nevertheless, he was involved in other sacrifices: founded an association, organized memorial service, maintained the memorial. And was always responsive, his cell phone, he told a month before the trial began, ringing day and night. “Out of fear,” he did that, “out of fear of being alone.”

Those who asked him for help spoke gratefully of him, observers worried: “He does not spare, he breaks it.” Today, the 44-year-old has left all club offices, many numbers deleted from his phone book. “Now I have problems, but nobody comes to me,” he says bitterly on Wednesday. If the testimony is behind him and perhaps the case against him, he finally wants to do inpatient therapy. “You have to get away,” a doctor had told him, “otherwise it will catch up with you.” The witness himself realized this: “I only want to have some rest.”

The (for the time being) last co-plaintiff

For today’s first co-plaintiff is invited as a witness, who is said to have been injured in the crowd, according to the court announcement “his own information on the day.” His role is controversial. A preliminary investigation is running against him because there are apparently doubts about his Love Parade consequential damages.

The fact is that the man has occasionally engaged in sacrificial associations and also organized the commemoration event “Night of the 1000 lights”. Since 2010 he has expressed himself in several newspaper and television reports. Even today, several journalists are interested in his statement. That’s not the rule in this process.

20 minutes late

The witness comes with a good 20 minutes late in the courtroom. He takes his seat in front of the judge, putting on the collar of the sweat-jacket, as if supporting his head. The witness was injured healthily, his lawyer says in advance. In fact, he seems lethargic right at the beginning.

The now 44-year-old describes how he spontaneously decided on a visit to Loveparade on July 24, 2010 – together with his then four-year-old daughter. Large parts of his report are confusing, consist of difficult-to-understand scraps of experience.

After the Love Parade, he looked at many Youtube videos, “but my memories do not match what I see on the videos.” In fact, that’s not really conclusive. “I’ve been trying to sort it out for 9 years and I can not do that.”

Several therapies

Although he had suffered bruises at the Loveparade, says the witness, but he is “not the type that complains so loud”. That’s why he did not go to the doctor. Only in February 2011, a doctor had diagnosed several months old rib fractures.

“Before, I was a giant asshole. That’s when I thought I was invulnerable, “says the witness. Today he is unable to work according to a doctor’s report. The psychological problems had emerged only after the Love Parade 2010. He then went through several therapies.

Richter shows a high degree of empathy

Before the lunch break, the witness removes visibly. “Can not you say the word ‘tight’ so often?” He asks the judge. He responds with all professional distance with remarkable empathy. He shows himself patient and forgiving.

His commitment to the victims’ interests, the witness described today as a big mistake. He had been exploited by many sides.

9th April


To my knowledge, we have not had such a short process day as we have today. At 11:15, the presiding judge ends the session after a remarkably insensitive witness questioning.

The court has already asked its questions to the witness, today press spokeswoman for the company of the Loveparade organizer Rainer Schaller, last week. Today prosecutors, co-plaintiffs and defenders are on the line. Most frequent answers of the 43-year-olds: “I do not remember” and “No, I did not notice that”.

“I just had to see that this works in the VIP area,” she describes her task on the day of the event. “Whether the ramps should now also be escape routes, I do not know.”

Watched cameras every night

Also for the internal follow-up of the disaster, the witness does not have much to say today. She typed Lopavant employee memory records a few days after the disaster. She also recalls, “that we’ve spent over a week every night watching cameras.”

It still seems difficult to understand the exact structures and communication flows at Lopavent. Unlike witnesses from the ranks of the city of Duisburg or the police, there are only a handful of documents in the organizer’s company that could be used to nail the witnesses to binding statements. In this respect, this day is unsatisfactory for me as an observer. He has brought no new knowledge.

Tomorrow morning, the Loveparade process continues. Then the – provisionally – last co-plaintiff is invited as a witness.

4th April

Witness from the Schaller Group

Meet a witness and a defendant at the coffee machine …

The witness works as a spokeswoman in the company of the former Loveparade organizer Rainer Schaller. In the “Facility Management” the accused is active, says the witness, what with technology do the.

Schaller the boss – then and now

Just nine years after the catastrophe with 21 dead, apparently some of the former Lopavent employees work together in Schaller’s fitness group (annual turnover: over 350 million euros). In total, three Lopavent people are still sitting in the dock at the Loveparade trial.

The now 43-year-old witness admits that she spoke with the accused colleague about her performance before her court hearing. The presiding judge Mario Plein asks whether both have spoken about the contents of the criminal proceedings. The woman answers, no, it was just formalities in the courtroom.

“What’s wrong”

On the day of the disaster, the witness was responsible for looking after VIP guests and Loveparade sponsors. “Everything started off well,” she says about July 24, 2010. For her it was a “nice event”. The judge replies that this applies only to the beginning. The witness affirms this and reports how she received the message from her supervisor in the afternoon: “Something bad has happened.”

The judge asks in detail what the witness knew exactly about the duties of the remaining three Lopavent defendants at the Loveparade. She had come to the team only six weeks before the event, so she knows little, says the witness.

Surprisingly, she explains, however, that her former supervisor, whose assistant she was, had “responsible” for the 2010 Loveparade. He had “signed” many documents in the common office space. What exactly, she can not say.

The case against this man had been discontinued in February (as were six defendants from the ranks of the city of Duisburg). And this ex-defendant is no longer working for Schaller today. On the contrary: Schaller and he had “fallen out” after the Love Parade, the witness said.

Skepticism at the prosecution and court

On request, the witness can not conclusively explain several times, where she got insights – about the former Loveparade defendant. Then she says, “someday” she heard that and that – or, “I heard that.” But when? And from whom?

Procuratorate and court show that they see the testimony of the witness skeptical. “Since I can always start so little,” says Judge Plein at one point a little annoyed.

The witness’s questioning will continue next week.

3rd April

The production assistant

Today the assistant of the production manager of the company Lopavent testified. The business economist started her job for Lopavent 2006 as an intern in Berlin. After that, she was repeatedly hired by the production manager for the organization team and worked for all the following Loveparades as a freelancer. She worked closely with the defendants. She is friends with one until today. Also, her husband had met the young mother at the Love Parade.

Little memory

As a production assistant, the witness was responsible for hotel bookings, order management, VIP support, and the ID system on the event grounds. She also shared an office with the production manager in court at the Lopavent headquarters in Duisburg. She always heard that there had been discussions. She could not remember any content today. They only received important e-mails so that they could file them. The bills were indeed “run” over their table, from budget cuts but they did not notice.

No knowledge gain

The witness is nervous. Her interjections and the embarrassed giggling seem out of place. She reminds me of a colleague from the city of Duisburg, whom we heard in July 2018. This witness, too, could not remember the content, although she had worked closely with the city’s Loveparade 2010 planners and had even recorded the sessions.

It may be that some witnesses have repressed their memories because they have personally hit the disaster badly and they could not handle the catastrophe. That’s what the witness said today. As a process blogger today is still unsatisfactory. I know you can not call all witnesses, whose memory gaps seem strange, unbelievable. Nevertheless, I wished that all witnesses could clarify the misfortunes of their own needs. This would be a great service to the relatives of the victims and the victims of the Loveparade disaster.

2nd April

Love Parade disaster: serious allegations against lawyer

Loveparade victims make serious allegations against lawyer
Among other things, it is said to have embezzled insurance money
Lawyer herself rejects all allegations

There are serious allegations that make several victims of the Love Parade disaster against a lawyer. They say that not only did the woman have false hopes for high damages, but they also misappropriated insurance premiums and levied excessively excessive charges. The lawyer herself rejects all allegations.

Thousands of euros of debt

Can Firat was used as a folder at the Love Parade in Duisburg, was an eyewitness to the disaster and revived one of the victims again. After that, he suffered massively from the psychological consequences, had to give up his job. In desperation, he turned to the lawyer. “What she wanted to achieve for me, first and foremost, that I get compensation,” says Firat.

The lawyer was convinced that this works. The costs are also incurred for him, but he was not properly informed at the beginning. In the end he remained according to own data on approximately 7,000 euro debt sitting.

Lawyer rejects allegations

On a WDR request, the lawyer states: “The allegations that they have not been properly informed are sharply rejected and absurd, and those concerned have been informed about the cost risk at all times.” She also reports on a form that the clients have signed. In that it is pointed out that one should inform oneself as exactly as possible about the height of the expected lawyer and court costs.

Lawyers want to file criminal charges

But the allegations go even further. Attorney Peter Jürgensen has taken over several former clients of the lawyer. He and another colleague, who has also taken over clients, want to put criminal charges soon. It appears from the file the suspicion that the attorney did not forward money paid by Axa in the form of damages or compensation to the clients and that she also charged too high fees. Both would theoretically be a criminal offense, according to Peter Jürgensen.

Investigations in other cases

The public prosecutor Bochum told the WDR on request that currently two preliminary investigations in other cases with the allegation of infidelity or the fraud against the lawyer are pending. The lawyer also refutes these allegations – she also gave her approval for health reasons. Can Firat stutters his debts now in installments. He goes back to work, but suffers today from the psychological consequences of the Love Parade disaster.

27th March

Love Parade Process: No investigations against OLG

An earlier defendant in the Loveparade trial accused the Dusseldorf Higher Regional Court of appealing “right-wing bruising” and admonished it: its decision to open the Loveparade trial was “arbitrary”. But the prosecutor sees it differently.

Düsseldorf (dpa / lnw) – The prosecutor Dusseldorf pursued the criminal complaint of a former defendant in the Loveparade trial of the Higher Regional Court Dusseldorf no further. The inclusion of investigations against a senate of the Higher Regional Court because of legal inflection had been rejected, said the spokeswoman for the prosecutor, Britta Zur, on request of the German Press Agency. A right turn was not to be recognized.

The announcement was made by the former building chief of the city of Duisburg. Above all, social and political pressure had led to his indictment, he had argued according to a WDR report. The judges had not dealt with his defense arguments. The public prosecutor may appeal against the decision of the public prosecutor.

The Duisburg Regional Court had not allowed the indictment of ten accused in the Loveparade trial in April 2016 for the main trial. After numerous complaints, the Düsseldorf Higher Regional Court allowed the indictment in April 2017 and ordered the trial. It began in December 2017. At the beginning of February 2019, seven of the ten defendants were given curfew without restraint after 101 days of trial.

The former Baudezernent had complained “monstrous misjudgments of the indictment,” had quoted the “WAZ” from its application. He was “intentionally and unlawfully accused in the Loveparade trial”, although the formerly competent chamber in Duisburg “found neither sufficient nor actual suspicion for my actions”. He told the judges, according to “WAZ”, “unlawful allegations” about his responsibility for building supervision. In addition, they had been influenced by a petition with 350,000 signatures and were biased. The decision to open the process was “objectively arbitrary”.

At the Loveparade on July 24, 2010 in Duisburg, there was so much crowding at the only entrance and exit to the event grounds that 21 people were crushed and at least 652 were injured. The criminal case against three employees of the organizer continues.

26th March

“God bless you!”

The witness today was responsible among other things for the radio of the organizer. However, apparently only for determining needs and procurement – or “matrix”, as he calls it. “Did you have any idea about radio?” Asks Judge Plein. “Nope. I did not need that either. There are so highly professional service providers, “replies the witness.

Top placement in the memory gaps

That the radio has always worked on the day of the event, the trained historian wants to know exactly. Otherwise he does not remember much. Much to the chagrin of the judge: “We’ve already heard many witnesses here and also many who have said in many places, they can not remember certain things. But they are on their way to getting an absolute top ranking in the things they can not remember. “
Not only on the reproaches of the judge, the witness has little to say, even his own description of the Love Parade 2010 is extremely scarce and holey. In the judge’s opinion, that could be because he was a close friend of two of the defendants. One is a godfather of his two-year-old son, the other stays overnight with him on the day of the trial, the Essene admits.

Flat hierarchies

“Grace to you, God, if the personal relationship with the accused causes you to not remember. Please be careful, you should try to tell us what you know about it! “, Plein breaks it out in one place. This irritates the witness for a short time, but does not provide for a much better memory. Also not regarding the hierarchical structures, so who decided what in the last instance when planning the Loveparade 2010: “The hierarchies were very flat.”


As the witness has prepared for the trial, the judge wants to know at the end of the trial. “Not at all.” The witness is married to a former employee of the Lopavent, one of the defendants is the godfather of his son and another at his kitchen table at the end of each day of the trial. “Strange,” the judge finds. Me too.

14th March

Loveparade trial: A criminal complaint against the OLG judges

In the Loveparade trial he was a defendant: Now the former Duisburg Baudezernent goes against the judges, who made the process possible.

The criminal proceedings for Loveparade disaster against him and five other city employees has been set, now brings Jürgen Dressler to the counter-stroke: The former, retired Duisburg Baudezernent has filed a criminal complaint against the 2nd Senate of the Higher Regional Court of Dusseldorf. His charge: right-wing. The judges responsible there had ordered the criminal proceedings and thereby overruled the 5th Chamber of the Duisburg district court: The had refused an opening.

“Unbelievable Misjudgment of the Prosecution”

Dressler (71) complains in the application, which is the WAZ, “monstrous

Brecht’s misjudgments “and quotes Brecht:” Where injustice becomes lawful, resistance becomes a duty. “He was” willfully and unlawfully accused in the Loveparade trial “, although the previously competent chamber in Duisburg” neither a sufficient nor actual suspicion for my actions “.

Among other things, he holds the judges “unlawful allegations” about his responsibility for building supervision. In addition, they had let themselves be influenced by a petition with 350,000 signatures and were biased. The decision to open the process was “objectively arbitrary”.

The Loveparade process is currently being continued against four employees of the former organizer.

12th March

No cake in the lead room

I drive, as so often, with the subway to the court date. The route leads past the Loveparade site. Where, on July 24, 2010, hundreds of thousands of people have passed the West Entrance Lock, the train stops at a stop. People get out, others climb. Everyday life. And yet I wonder if the motorists inevitably have to think of the Love Parade, when they wait with a view into the tunnel at the traffic light.

No “anecdote”

In the courtroom, we continue with the now 38-year-old policeman who prepared the technology and logistics of the Loveparade mission in 2010. Going fast. Since the co-plea has no questions to the witness, the defenders are immediately at it. “The times I was on the venue, in the run-up to the Love Parade, can be counted on one hand,” says the witness on demand. On the day of the event, he sat in the leading room of the police.

A colleague of the witness was retired on the day of the event, a defense attorney notes. His last big job. The defender wants to know if there has been a ceremony. I suspect which “anecdote” she wants to hear. Namely, those of police officers who are not focused on their work. But she does not get this anecdote. “I think I would have remembered a cake or a bunch of flowers,” says the witness. The farewell was not solemn. “There is no room for such a mission.” The witness may go before noon.

Tomorrow: Lopavent witness

The court will start preparing for the next day of the trial and will read out the planning documents and minutes of the event organizer Lopavent. That has to be. Because only if a document has been officially introduced in the process, it has a value for the negotiation. So tomorrow is a witness from ranks of the organizer company.

7th March

Again a police witness with memory gaps

The present witness at the Loveparade 2010 in Duisburg had two tasks. The 38-year-old police officer was responsible for the technical and logistical preparation of the deployment with several thousand officers: for example, for food and mobile communications of the police. On the day of the event, he also sat on the senior staff and wrote police internal reports.

The interview on the preparation phase is tough. The presiding judge Mario Plein confronts the witness with numerous documents from these weeks and months.

The official can not remember much – for example, he no longer knows who his contact person at the organizer Lopavent was. When asked with which of the remaining three defendants he had to deal, he looks partly confused.

Forget important meeting in the sports school Wedau

Conspicuous: Once again, a police witness can not remember the final briefing of the police officers in the sports school Wedau. He has only “rudimentary memories” of this internal police appointment, says the witness: “I can not say anything more about the content.” Regrettable, because one would have liked to know whether and which points of criticism in the sports school came up for the upcoming mission.

His memory works a bit better when it comes to the day of the disaster. The witness impressively describes the mood in the headquarters headquarters on July 24, 2010. From first reports about crowding and overrun barriers – up to the first unconfirmed report about “one or two dead”. This had “blown over” those present, the witness reports the atmosphere of bewilderment. In the end there were 21 dead and hundreds injured.

Everything went its bureaucratic course with the police

The audience in the courtroom learns many details about how the police communicate with each other in such a large-scale operation. Interesting: The written by the witness internal situation logs were not breaking hot news, but partly over half an hour old. Because before the publication in the police communication system, the messages were first read by several witnesses. My impression: Even on the day of action with a rapidly escalating extreme situation, everything went its bureaucratic gear with the police.

The witness will continue to be questioned at the next trial on 12 March. Then it’s the turn of plaintiffs and defenders.

6th March

No plan B

The questioning of the 50-year-old policeman continues. The witness answers questions from prosecutors, co-plaintiffs and defense attorneys to police cars, police chains, police communications. All familiar topics in the process – especially the chains.

The official describes how he and his colleagues tried to “implement something profitably” on the day of the Love Parade disaster – in the midst of the escalating crowds of ramp and tunnel. He struggles for words: “I can not stand by and do nothing.” With hindsight we know that the measures of the police at least did not prevent the fatal mass panic, but perhaps even contributed to the aggravation of the situation.

Organizer should take care

Once again, it becomes clear that the “small” policemen at the crucial location of the parade did not believe before the mission that the access concept would work for the Duisburg Love Parade. And the witness also confirms that there was no police emergency plan in case of a menacing traffic jam at the transition to the actual event site: “There was no plan B.”

His superiors had told him that the organizer would already take care of it and arrange with folders to ensure that the crowds would quickly pass through to the party area.

Coffee, cake, ski vacation

The witness hearing then becomes very small-scale. A defender wants to know exactly how police chains are formed. Another defender leaves minutes for a testimony, to which this witness may say nothing. The judge admonishes the lawyer that provision should be brief and concise.

A defense lawyer wants to know the details of a meeting of the officer with other police, who also testified as a witness. The attendees in the courtroom hear that the group of colleagues sat together, according to Witness, “between an hour 45 minutes to two hours five minutes” – with coffee and cake. Among other things, they talked about the accident of one of the colleagues who had just returned from a skiing holiday.

Tomorrow, the next policeman will testify. Personally, I find it right and important that many police officers testify in the trial. It’s not about putting individual officials on the pillory. It must go to complete and thorough investigation of all errors, omissions and mishaps – just because no single police officer in the process in the dock and sits.

5th March

“That looked like a bomb blast without blood.”

For me, after the termination of the case against seven defendants today is the first day of negotiations in a smaller cast. For us press people, the partial adjustment has a practical positive effect: we got two rows of tables and even power connection to it. I do not have to balance my laptop on my knees anymore. Another innovation: The trade fair company has piled up other cups on request of the court. Instead of producing full plastic garbage, we now tap our water into cups, which, according to the manufacturer, consist of 100 percent renewable raw materials.

lump in throat

As a witness today another police officer is loaded. The platoon leader was supposed to form a police chain on the ramp at that time. I actually thought I was ready now, after all the testimonies of witnesses who were in the middle of the crowd. But I feel a lump in my throat again as I experience how this man, who has certainly seen a lot in the course of his professional life, struggles for composure, searches for words, shakes his voice as he tells. How a colleague whom he had sent into the swirling crowd dropped off a radio message: “‘Help, Help’. That’s not what a police officer does. A police officer is conditioned to say something over the radio, even in difficult situations, with which colleagues can do something. “

“It does not work around down there, God does not run around!”

He realized that something went awry, says the 50-year-old. And then, as he got through with his people to the place where the crowd had come from before: “That looked like a bomb blast without blood. There were people everywhere, everywhere the colleagues were busy caring for people, the rescue service was there, other Lover Parade visitors have also taken care of the injured. “

New insights?

As much as the witness’s report touches me, after a while, I wonder what the cop can do to bring new insights into the guilt or innocence of the remaining defendants. At most indirectly, as his interrogation once again fails to paint a respectable image of the police operation. But he can say little about possible planning mistakes. Actually, just what he says about his site visit the day before the Love Parade: “What I still know exactly, that the impression I had of the place, was not a good one. I still remember that I looked up the East ramp and thought: Jo, if that works, the people at the head of the ramp are pushed by so-called pushers on the ground and sucked in by the floats. What we discussed in advance was that if it worked at all, it would be very difficult. “

27th February

Day 105: Concerns with key cops

By Martin Teigeler on February 27, 2019

On the day before the catastrophe in Duisburg: The then Lord Mayor Adolf Sauerland (CDU) is on his return trip from his holiday in Austria on 23 July 2010 – he learns by SMS from an employee from the town hall that the Love Parade could take place. In fact, city employees will check on the morning of the event to see if any conditions imposed on the organizer Lopavent for approval have been met. In the end, the techno-parade is pulled through despite many discussions, reservations and doubts.

“Professionally prepared”?

The NRW Ministry of the Interior sent a press release on this Friday before the disaster. Headline: “Police prepared professionally for Love Parade”. All are “highly motivated,” the then Interior Minister Ralf Jäger (SPD) is quoted in it. The message is spread in many media.

At this July 23, 2010, it is now again in the criminal process in the continuation of the questioning of a 55-year-old police officer. And it is again clear that the police were not professionally prepared – and not at all confident, but rather skeptical.

The witness had already described his impressions of a site visit one day before the event. The access concept with the “boiler” tunnel and ramp he had considered “daring”, the official said. “We all said, ‘Dat does not work in life.'”

Shared concerns of colleagues

A defense attorney wants to know from the witness how his fellow colleagues would have rated the upcoming mission. The other platoon leaders, their deputies, as well as the Police Hundreds leaders, who were to be deployed at the tunnel and ramp – the crucial location of the deadly mass panic – shared his concerns. A catastrophe with dead but one did not predict, says the witness. But already, that it would be very narrow at the entrance.

With these negative impressions from the site inspection, the officials went into action. According to witness, he had seen little chance at this time because of his low position in the police hierarchy to change anything on the deployment plan.

26th February

Media: Ex-Defendant in the Loveparade Trial Indicates Judge

A former defendant in the Loveparade trial has reported to several judges of the Higher Regional Court of Düsseldorf, according to WDR information.
According to a recent WDR report, a recent defendant has notified several judges of the Higher Regional Court in Düsseldorf after the recent developments in the Loveparade trial. Accordingly, it is the department head of the city of Duisburg Jürgen Dressler, who accuses the judges on seven pages right bow.

According to WDR information, it states, among other things, that above all, social and political pressure would have led to the indictment of the Duisburg district councilor, for example an online petition of survivors of the disaster.

The district court of Duisburg initially had not found enough evidence for the guilt of the city employee and other colleagues from him and dismissed the action therefore. The Higher Regional Court Dusseldorf, however, had allowed them then.

Loveparade trial in Duisburg: ex-defendant indicates judge

By Benjamin Sartory

Ex-defendant indicates several judges
The former deputy sees his innocence confirmed
OLG admitted to trial for social pressure

In the criminal proceedings for the Love Parade disaster with 21 dead, an ex-defendant according to WDR information several judges of the Higher Regional Court Dusseldorf reported. He says that above all, social and political pressure have led to his indictment.
Specifically, the man means, among other things, an online petition of survivors of the Love Parade disaster. With the help of around 360,000 digital signatures, they had asked the Higher Regional Court to open the process after all.

District Court Duisburg initially dismissed the indictment
The former deputy of the city of Duisburg should be accused after the disaster with other accused. The district court of Duisburg did not see enough evidence for a debt and rejected the lawsuit. The Higher Regional Court of Dusseldorf allowed them but then.
Ex-defendant accuses judges of right bowing
On seven pages in total, the former Duisburg city employee mentions further arguments. Thus, the judges before the Higher Regional Court had not dealt with his defense arguments. Juridically, he accuses them of bending the law.
At the trial for the Duisburg Love Parade disaster, the proceedings against him and six other defendants had been stopped just under three weeks ago. The judges go out with them – if at all – only from a small guilt.
Process continues
Three other defendants had declined an attitude – they want to reach an acquittal. The process continues against them.

12th February

Loveparade trial continues: ex-defendants as witnesses?

By Martin Teigeler

Loveparade process continues on Tuesday

Ex-defendants may testify as witnesses

But still investigative committee?

At first glance, “business as usual” in the Loveparade process: As on every day of the hearing, the presiding judge Mario Plein will welcome those present on Tuesday (12.02.2019) at 9.30 in a Düsseldorf exhibition hall. But then only three men are sitting in the dock – all employees of the organizer Lopavent. Charge: negligent assault and negligent homicide.

Ex-defendant soon back in the courtroom?

The trial has been closed to seven defendants – in part in protest of members of the 21 fatalities of the July 24, 2010 disaster. Now, the city’s six employees and one of Lopavent’s employees may soon be summoned as witnesses. If the seven ex-defendants testify, new facts about the causes of the disaster may come to light.
“At present, the former defendants are not yet charged as witnesses.” The court decides if they will be summoned at a later date, “the court spokesman said. The summons of the ex-defendant had already been requested by a sideline representative.

Observers are watching with excitement on how court, prosecution, but also the partly newly composed defense lawyers in the process behave. Will new evidence be introduced? Is the expert opinion evaluated in detail? Do prominent witnesses like Duisburg ex-mayor Adolf Sauerland (CDU) have to answer their questions?

In any case, the process is under time pressure. On July 28, 2020 – ten years after the death of the last victim – the statute of limitations begins. If then no verdict has been issued, the defendants go unpunished.

But still investigative committee?
Meanwhile, politicians and commentators are debating whether a committee of inquiry should be used in the Landtag for the Love Parade disaster. In 2010 and 2011, such a committee had failed mainly because of opposition from the CDU and the SPD.

Skeptically speaking, the Green Interior Expert Verena Schäffer. To such a committee one should have “no wrong expectations”. A committee of inquiry could not replace the task of a court to clarify the question of guilt.

8th February

Loveparade trial: Twelve co-plaintiffs resigned

In the Loveparade trial, several co-plaintiffs left the process after seven defendants were dismissed. “Twelve plaintiffs, the complaint was only authorized in relation to the city employees and they are no longer involved in the proceedings after the partial cessation of proceedings,” said the spokesman for the District Court of Duisburg, Matthias Breidenstein, on Friday the “BILD” newspaper. The court had informed the co-plaintiffs and their lawyers on Thursday. The court registered 58 co-plaintiffs at the beginning of February. Among them are numerous relatives.

The Duisburg district court had closed the proceedings against seven of the ten defendants on Wednesday without conditions. Among the seven were all six former employees of the city of Duisburg. Three defendants had declined an attitude. Against them will be further negotiated. At the Techno-Festival in July 2010 in Duisburg in a crush 21 young people were crushed to death and more than 650 injured.

Subcontracting and undermining responsibility

What has neoliberalism to do with the end of the Duisburg Loveparade process? A comment

21 people are killed and more than 600 injured. The guilty party can not make out the culprit, as we now know. The Lopavent boss Rainer Schaller and the Lord Mayor Adolf Sauerland never sat in the dock, which will remain incomprehensible for parents whose children were killed.

Lopavent, with his boss Rainer Schaller and the police, dismissed the security concept, which catastrophically failed because the escape area (tunnel, fence) offered no space, so that people could have freed themselves from the deadly scrum without any problems. Why no guilty party could be found there remains difficult to understand for the layman.

Our legal system seems to be unable to pinpoint causal factors in complex events. In addition, the “rational” security concept was not sufficient to “calculate” or estimate the behavior of people and crowds in non-normative situations. This was similar to the mathematical models that the “quants” (mathematical stock market specialists) came up with and that miserably failed in 2008, when the international financial market crisis caused billions of dollars worth of trending worldwide.

Behind all this tragedy lies a development driven by neoliberalism to save costs: the subcontractor. Already as with the collapse of the archive of the city of Cologne, where the search for guilt had been difficult, it was difficult to find a cause (if the right one was found, that should be accepted). As companies increasingly hire subcontractors, subcontractors, and so on, responsibilities are so dispersed that nobody is responsible for anything. Everyone can talk themselves out, because in this chain of command everyone can claim that he is only responsible for his area and that nothing has happened.

The benefit of a work-sharing network of sub-responsibilities

At the Loveparade in Duisburg, neither Herr Schaller nor, in particular, the mayor, Adolf Sauerland, felt responsible for their position as natural responsible persons. If only one responsible person had been appointed, then there would never have been this Love Parade, because everyone suspected that there were risks in the mass event and the terrain that were not really manageable. Had it not been so, then Adolf Sauerland as mayor and first citizen of the city of Duisburg would have been able to take over the duty for a risk-free event.

That he did not, and others did not, is revealing and the result of a capitalist system that is so diversified that everyone shares responsibility with their subcontractors, not just to save costs, but also to “save” responsibility. In this way you build the Berlin airport or the Stuttgart station and no one is responsible for the disaster or the progressive cost increases.

To date, no real responsible for the international financial market crisis has been found. Most likely it is the system. Whatever or who that is. It does, however, relieve the polluter because risks can be distributed to so many shoulders that, with a light heart, the next major project can be tackled. The work-sharing network of subordinate responsibilities makes it possible, with which probably our legal system has its problems.

And finally the event in Duisburg. The wasteland of the former freight yard was fenced for irritating way. This was especially irritating because, according to the organizers, around 1.4 million people were expected. As always, shiny numbers, of course. But the fence also played a decisive, deadly role in the 400,000 people actually arrived. While walking in the grounds a few days before the parade, press representatives and “lovetruck” operators were in doubt about the fencing and the tunnel entry and exit, but they also confused – falsely – with the disdainful security concept of the police and Lopavent. (Klaus Weinert)

6th February

Victim Father railing against decision of the court

Eight and a half years after the Love Parade disaster with 21 dead, the Duisburg district court has closed the criminal case against seven of ten defendants. For them, the process is completed without penalties and restrictions. This was announced by the court on Wednesday in Düsseldorf.

Lowering high blood pressure naturally: four methods that really help youThree defendants, who should have paid a sum of around 10,000 euros, had declined to take a job. The process continues against them now.

Planning mistakes and collective failure led to catastrophe

At the Loveparade in July 2010 in Duisburg, 21 young people were crushed to death and more than 650 were injured in a crush. The process started in December 2017. All defendants had been accused of, among other things, negligent homicide and serious planning mistakes.

The court had proposed hiring in mid-January. The individual guilt of the accused was low or at best regarded as moderate. In addition to planning errors, the court sees a collective failure of many people on the day as co-responsible for the disaster.

The son of Klaus-Peter Mogendorf died in the crush
Several adjutant lawyers had criticized the attitude in advance. There continues to be a public interest in education, they argued.

The father of a Love Parade victim railed on Wednesday violently against the decision. The report on the accident was arbitrarily cited selectively by the court, numerous defects and offenses were not mentioned, important witnesses have not yet been heard, Klaus-Peter Mogendorf said on the 101st day of the trial.

He had lost his son Eike in the disaster.

The court heard 59 witnesses and eight experts in 14 months
Among the seven defendants for whom the trial is now ending are six employees of the city of Duisburg as well as an employee of the Loveparade organizer Lopavent. The three defendants for whom the lawsuit continues were also employed by Lopavent.

As a reason for their consent to hiring the prosecutor’s office had called the fact that on 28 July 2020, the limitation period occurs. The proof program required by law for a judgment can not be completed until then, even in the case of the greatest effort.

Thus, most of the 575 witnesses mentioned in the central expert report would still have to be heard. In the past 14 months, the court heard 59 witnesses and eight experts.

Loveparade process: FDP wants better legal procedural options

After the criticism of relatives of victims of the 2010 Duisburg Love Parade in the termination of the trial of seven of ten defendants, the FDP demands better ways to deal with such procedures. “Especially in exposed, complex issues, the rule of law must demonstrate its ability to act,” said the vice-chairman of the FDP parliamentary group, Stephan Thomae, the newspapers of the “editorial network Germany”. If he is not in a position to “clarify the criminal responsibility in mammoth procedures, the citizens lose their confidence in the rule of law,” said Thomae.

One must therefore make criminal proceedings more effective, faster and more practical. Abroad you are on there. As an example, Thomae called the legal management of the terrorist attack of 11 March 2004 with nearly 200 dead and several hundred injured in Madrid. The trial of 28 defendants was closed in 2007 after eight and a half months. The FDP politician proposes to allow the formation of co-plaintiff groups in large-scale processes if they had equal interests. “Then the victims and their interests in the criminal process would still be adequately represented, but the number of those involved in large-scale proceedings would be significantly reduced,” said Thomae.

He warned against giving in to the sobering outcome of the Duisburg Loveparade trial of the temptation to restrict the rights of defendants and their defenses. “Anyone who faces the concentrated state power as an individual needs effective defense,” said the vice-chairman of the FDP parliamentary group.

“Unsatisfactory, that one does not hold responsible persons to account”

Barenberg: And your assessment would be that for your clients actually the aspect of the truth is in the foreground and that they can reasonably cope with this question that the education and that the responsibilities may not be named so concrete in the end?

Reiter: You know, those who are in the dock did not think they were the wrong ones, but at least not enough. Because the big ones had already been let go. Mr. Schaller, the McFit operator, the managing director of the organizer. Then the Raven, who played an even more important role than we intended, which was also revealed in the course of the proceedings. The appraiser, Dr. Schreckenberg, who weighed them down, the people, that this is all right with this event, and also the role of the police.

So these are things that have crystallized out. In this respect, the lies are punished who said from the outset, the process has brought nothing. It has brought a lot. But, of course, the result is unsatisfactory that you do not hold responsible responsible accountable.

Barenberg: You have just said that the big ones have already been run. Now, the law in Germany requires yes to each guilty to prove an individual fault and then to provide evidence that describe exactly their behavior that this has led to the death or suffering of other people. Do you just have to acknowledge in this case that this has been such a complex event that it simply is not possible in this case?

Reiter: Those are just the conditions of the rule of law. It is not that these defendants did not know what they were doing. Those in the building office have tried in part to prevent the implementation of the event. They knew it was a dangerous event. You just can not talk about it.

And in that sense, they just have not upset the moral courage that we expect from officials, and that’s what they really oppose. It has been highlighted a bit positively now also by the prosecutor, yes, they were there partly as troublemakers, were so regarded. But, you know, I expect more from responsible construction department employees than what they showed there.

“This is now a fight for the statute of limitations”
Barenberg: And what do you think if the court, or at any rate the presiding judge, has apparently already come to the conclusion that the individual guilt of the accused is low, or at best moderate, and that it is altogether a collective failure of many people quite a lot of culprits, and not one or two or three.

Reiter: Yes, that puts the court in a dilemma situation. What else should it do? And the court sees it will not be finished within the remaining time, because next year in July is the maximum limitation period that expires – this is now also a fight for the statute of limitations of the three defendants who do not want to accept a conditional condition. I can understand the court. There are mistakes made in advance. The years of investigation have taken too long. Then this unspeakable attitude by the first court, which was active, which prevented the process, the opening, so that we also lost another year. So you just have to say, we are not properly positioned for such mammoth processes in Germany.

The judiciary needs special departments where you can efficiently carry out such investigations. And we also have to think about the limitation period, because it is not the only procedure where you have this fight for the statute of limitations. Think of the great misfortune of Eschede, or think just recently of the case of the Cologne city archives. If the defenders then play their possibilities, which they are entitled to – we think they are all right – to play their defense options, then you can stretch out such a procedure alone through a conflict defense, through mere formalities, that it is difficult falls to speak before the statute of limitations here a verdict. And in this situation the court is here yes, it would be here too. In this respect, it is always very friendly to the defenders, while the victims’ advocates are more viewed as troublemakers.

“The big ones have already let you go”

Victim lawyer Julius Reiter has regretted the expected termination of the Loveparade trial. Nevertheless, the process has brought a lot. One had come much closer to the goal of experiencing the truth. “We can not do without the truth, rather with the punishment,” he said in the Dlf.

Julius Reiter in conversation with Jasper Barenberg

Jasper Barenberg: So for seven defendants, the process may soon be over, against three he will probably continue. With this prospect, the 65 injured and relatives of death victims, who hope for truth and certainly also on the responsibility of those responsible to cope. Law professor Julius Reiter represents ten co-plaintiffs in Düsseldorf, one survivor and the families of four dead. He is on the phone now. Good morning, Mr. Reiter!

Julius Reiter: Good morning!

Barenberg: The cessation of proceedings against seven defendants and the continuation against three accused. Do you expect the court to decide that today as well?

Reiter: The court will decide that at least against the seven defendants, so the construction and the one of the Lopavent is set because it is simply not enough and is foreseeable that they would not come to a conviction there.

Barenberg: How will you explain this to your client?

Reiter: We already talked about it, that was also foreseeable. This is very difficult for them to accept. You have to explain to them how a constitutional state works. And finally we came closer to our goal. We said that the process is important to us first of all to find out what happened that day. We came a lot closer to the truth. We have always said that we can not renounce the truth, rather than punishment.
And the other important goal is just that we can set claims for pain and suffering. And we can do that on the basis of the facts that came out in this year of negotiations. It has turned out that the police are also to blame. In that sense, the country is now also responsible.

“Our criminal law is not a law of compensation criminal law”

The termination of the case against seven defendants must be unsatisfactory for the victims, said the lawyer Thomas Fischer in the Df. However, one has to differentiate between general responsibility and criminal liability in the assessment – and that was too low for the defendants.

Thomas Fischer in conversation with Dirk Müller

Müller: Mr. Fischer, the decision in Dusseldorf – is excitement civic duty?

Fischer: No. Small correction: Decision in Duisburg you mean safe. No, excitement is of course not civic duty, although it is understandable in this case, so the public, so the citizens you address, of course, spontaneously take a position mostly for the victims of such disasters and crimes. That is also the case in this case and the victims can truly sue you and the bereaved. For such a result is almost inevitably unsatisfactory, because even if one says, I am not for revenge, but only for

As a rule, the need is usually very great, at least to say that somebody has to be responsible. It can not be that for such a disastrous process and for this result of 21 killed young people no one ultimately has to answer. Of course, that’s obvious, an obvious thought.

“The sum of all mistakes has led to disaster”

Müller: Is that convincing when the court argues that so far no one is responsible or not responsible enough to ultimately convict him?
Fischer: Of course, one has to distinguish between a general responsibility and a criminal guilt. We are dealing here with acts of negligence, that is with acts that were not deliberately, not intentionally, not deliberately committed together, but each of these ten defendants – I know the cases now in detail and what the individual people is accused – did some more or less trifle or very little trifle wrong.

And in the interaction of all these mistakes that have been committed there, each probably negligent, so ignoring the care ultimately required, the sum of all these errors has led to this disaster has set.

Of course, this is always a big problem, especially in the case of negligence, and one of them – of course the scores contradict each other, because this catastrophic result with terrible consequences on the one hand is often precluded by an inaction, ie a measure of negligence, which is very low. So it could be – probably in this case as well – that some individuals who have been causally involved in this erroneous planning process, and so on, and the event itself, that some of these people have made only very small mistakes that for It may not have been the cause, but because others accidentally made mistakes as well, it all came together. This can lead to individual people being causally causal for the mistake, but one can not say that these are serious criminals who now have to serve years in prison, for example.

The judges must determine the degree of guilt

Müller: A felonious criminal, I believe that was also not the case with the relatives and the victims, the injured victims in the form, at least not officially and what we have heard. But I have to ask you again: So if I understood you correctly, Mr Fischer, it may well be that hundreds of cogs do not work in succession and with each other, and because there are hundreds of cogs that lead to disaster, there are Do not blame anyone.

Fischer: Yes, that can be done on a case by case basis – no, there is not someone who is not at fault. It is also in these ten cases and the attitude is not that the defendants are acquitted.

Müller: But it’s not serious enough to blame.
Fischer: The rules that are applied presuppose in the seven attitudes, without fine payment, assume that the debt is very low, and the unaffiliated presuppose that the debt is not so heavy that they are punished by a fine – I think 10,000 euros was proposed to a charitable organization – could not be eliminated.

Müller: And you can definitely say that? The judge can tell the judge, depending on who is involved, whether the debt is so minor that not even a fine is necessary?

Fischer: He can not only do that, the judges can not only find out, but –

Müller: You have to.

Fischer: – That’s the job of the judges to determine guilt. If they do not cease proceedings and convict the defendants of negligent homicide, they must also determine the extent of the guilt and say whether they will now be fined or imprisoned with or without parole. That’s the same evaluation process. I just want to make a quick remark.

“Major factor in negligence”

Müller: Please.

Fischer: The problem, what always shows up, that’s the big, how shall I say, random factor in negligence. Quite often, very bad consequences are the result of negligence, which is barely different from what others do. So 10,000 motorists drive through a street a bit too fast, and a single one drives too fast and a child jumps on the street and the child is killed. Of course this is terribly bad for the child’s parents, but this single driver will say that I did not commit a serious crime, after all I acted just as negligently as anyone else.

Müller: But why is the gravity of the consequences, ie the severity of the episode, no argument for a verdict?

Fischer: That’s an argument that plays a role, but after all, we do not have pure success criminal law. Then we could do without negligence or intent, ie a personal connection of the respective causer with the result altogether. Then we could say it just depends, somebody did something, some episode is there, so he gets heavily punished. We have been away from it for many hundreds of years. For us it is precisely on the level of personal guilt.

Müller: But then it always has to be unsatisfactory for the victims?

Fischer: That is almost inevitably often unsatisfactory. Not always, but it is often unsatisfactory. Of course, a piece of advice: Anyone who thinks about it – and it’s a difficult problem, that’s also – not in this process occurs for the first time, but in very many procedures, it is only here once again particularly obvious and clear – Everyone should just think, on the one hand what would I think if my child were the victim and secondly what would I think if my child were one of the defendants and would be busy at the city of Duisburg or at this event and have a small one Planning error committed. If I were to say it now too, that is unbearable that the procedure is stopped.

“Negligence is hard to bear for the victims”

Müller: But why did so many people – who, yes, I think, ask this question, especially when you mention the example, that is to imagine, your own child is affected, injured or even killed – why have so many people, however qualified and not qualified, does not matter at all – quite often exactly the impression that here in this case 21 dead are not taken over any responsibility, thus no criminal responsibility, which is somehow measurable, which is noticeable that that can not be in a constitutional state that deals with it for years?

Fischer: Of course, the length of the argument is not important.

Müller: Which is even more unsatisfactory, if that takes so long.

Fischer: Of course, you’re always rightly addressing the same problem, namely the size, scope, shock of the result, and possibly the other, possibly, I do not know the 100-day trial and the evidence, but the court has It is so valued, the small action, so yes it is action and not success guilt, the success is huge, the offense is perhaps very small, which is often difficult for victims of criminal proceedings and especially of negligence to endure and difficult wear, let’s say so. But that alone is of course no argument against the rule of law or against the criminal justice system as a whole, because a court is not there to act vicariously for the victims now the revenge or even acting on behalf of public opinion so to speak, symbolically of any perpetrators now seek revenge, so the legal community calms down again.

“Our criminal law is not a law of compensation criminal law”

Müller: You say, Mr. Fischer, revenge. If we do not use that, the expression, but it’s a bit of satisfaction, a little bit of feeling that if something like that happens, someone will be held accountable, and it’s going to be so obvious is for all involved and for those who are interested.

Fischer: Yes, you can always give the arguments new names, but it always comes back to the same thing, whether you say satisfaction or revenge. It’s not meant to be evil. I just want to say that a court does not have the task of unilaterally deciding in favor of a party in quotes, a party in such a procedure. That is precisely the task of the court, to withdraw neutral. Our criminal law is not a law of criminal convictions, which should now provide the public or the injured party with satisfaction, but the goal is …

Müller: Well, there is no common sense. Is there no common sense in legal processes?

Fischer: That’s a distant conclusion.

Müller: That’s a question.

Fischer: Yes, and I say the answer is that this conclusion is far from it. Of course, the attribution of guilt to the personal relationship, according to what the individual defendant, the accused done, left, not done, not left, should have done and so on, that’s the measure according to which we have criminal law in our constitutional state Germany now for at least 70 years now.

“It’s not about the victims being humiliated”

Müller: Does that have to be right?

Fischer: Please?

Müller: Does this have to be correct in every way or is it possible to think about saying, well, maybe the victim perspective is missing a bit?

Fischer: You can think about that. It has been thought about for about 150 years and has come to regulate this in our constitution as it is now regulated. I think that’s the way it is. Of course, the task, also of the media, is also to understand it. After all, it’s not about low punishment or a low-debt job that’s supposed to humiliate the victims, or even say that’s all right. Criminal law is not primarily intended to deal with events of historical reality or to assign political responsibility or –

Müller: But to punish.

Fischer: – Lord Mayor to tell him to resign, or to tell the organizers what they would have done differently, what they should do differently next time. Criminal law is there for the state to decide whether a single person – in this case, ten individuals – has incurred so much guilt that it must be punished. And if that can not be determined, then he is to be acquitted if he has no blame at all, and if the guilt is low, then our criminal procedural law for 45 years approximately provides that you can set a procedure because of low or at least not great debt ,

“Whether a case is closed has nothing to do with the evidence”

Müller: So that’s a bit for lack of evidence.

Fischer: No, that has almost nothing to do with it at first. Let’s just say that the three defendants or defendants who have not agreed now, of course, have the proceedings continuing, presumably say, the progress of the case, the pending, or at least named, 500 witnesses and the impending absolute statute of limitations in June 2020 in mind.

Müller: In the summer of next year.

Fischer: In that regard, one could say that if the evidence has not been provided by then, then the proceedings would be definitively closed or acquitted. That may have played a role in the consideration. But whether a case is closed has nothing to do with the evidence in principle.

Müller: Here at noon on Deutschlandfunk Professor Dr. Thomas Fischer, for many years chairman of the Federal Court of Justice in Karlsruhe. Thank you for taking so much time for us! Have a nice day!

Fischer: Bye, bye, Mr Müller!

Müller: Goodbye!

Statements by our interlocutors reflect their own views. Deutschlandfunk does not embrace the statements of its interlocutors in interviews and discussions.

Loveparade trial set against seven defendants
By Dominik Peters

Love Parade Process: Seven defendants agree to attitudes
Proceedings continue against three defendants
Partial incomprehension to co-plaintiffs

The Loveparade criminal case was closed on Wednesday (06.02.2019) for seven of the ten defendants. The Duisburg district court justified its decision with the small guilt of the accused.

For the six employees of the city and one of the organizer Lopavent, the trial ends after 101 days without judgment. The prosecution had accused them of, among other things, negligent homicide and serious mistakes in the planning of the event.

Defense Attorney: Attitude means no admission of guilt
Defense lawyer Gerd-Ulrich Kapteina said his client was relieved. He emphasized that the termination of the proceedings – assuming a small debt – no confession.

The low debt is “purely hypothetical”. His client accepted the attitude because he knew “that an acquittal can not be achieved on grounds of time alone”.

Process continues for three defendants
Thus, the process continues only against three defendants. The courts and prosecutors had also proposed a termination of the proceedings – assuming an average debt – but for a payment of around 10,000 euros each.

The defendants, all employees of the organizer Lopavent, rejected this proposal. They insist on their right to be acquitted or convicted.

Parents of a victim: Many questions still open

Co-plaintiffs and some of their lawyers do not understand the premature end of the process. For example, Klaus-Peter and Stefanie Mogendorf, who lost their son in the 2010 disaster. Klaus-Peter Mogendorf referred to the many outstanding questions: “With individual activities of the defendants, the evidence has not yet taken.”
Presiding Judge: Prescription does not matter in decision
According to the presiding judge, Mario Plein, from a legal point of view, there are good reasons for stopping the proceedings. The threat of prescription in July 2020 did not play a role in the decision. “I’m not afraid that the process will be time-barred”, says Plein, “because we have nothing to blame ourselves for”.

“We are not yet at a point where we can definitely find a debt,” he continued. At the same time he was optimistic about the knowledge gained from the further proceedings. In the further course of the proceedings, according to Mario Plein, the court wants to hear “a large number of Lopavent employees” and “have a few more police officers on their faces”.

Love Parade: proceedings against seven defendants set

++ What the father of a victim writes to the court ++

Duisburg / Dusseldorf – The court has set the process for the legal processing of the Love Parade disaster of 2010 (21 dead, 652 injured) against seven of the ten defendants! For them, the process is completed without penalties and restrictions.

Three other defendants (staff of the organizer Lopavent) have not accepted that for themselves. The case was to be closed against a € 10,000 bid. A lawyer says: “My client does not renounce his right to be acquitted.”

With an emotional letter, mourning parents turned to the court on Wednesday. Klaus-Peter Mogendorf and his wife have lost their son Eike. Mogendorf writes in an eight-page letter: “Like other co-plaintiffs, we owe the main proceedings important findings about the Love Parade disaster 2010 in Duisburg. On January 17, the judge read the note about the legal discussion here. We were stunned. “The fact that the case against seven of the defendants is to be discontinued is incomprehensible to the Mogendorfs.

“I have been a civil engineer for over 37 years. During these years I have realized numerous special constructions and meeting places as a responsible project engineer. I know the relevant regulations, that is a peculiarity that sometimes torments me, because I see the process with different eyes. On the one hand, the father who lost his child at the event, on the other hand, the expert, who has to experience how careless and negligent the applicable rules and laws were handled. “

For the parents of Eike blame too early. The letter states: “Obviously, the Chamber believes that one can already judge on the basis of the previous evidence of guilt and innocence of the accused. For such a conclusion it is too early. The taking of evidence did not deal with the individual activities of the defendants. It is indispensable to further investigate these facts before finding guilt or innocence. Because neither guilt nor innocence are certain, even low and middle guilt can not yet be recognized. It needs to be further clarified. “

Lawyer Rainer Dietz (55) represents the family in the process. He to BILD: “As the prosecutor’s office with their own indictment and now without a fight agree to a setting, feels the client as a blow in the gut. Here a report is appreciated, which was not even properly introduced into the process. 21 dead, countless injured – and the prosecutor wants to stop the proceedings. How do you explain that to the father of a dead boy? “

Loveparade trial is largely discontinued: Seven defendants remain unpunished

The Loveparade trial is largely closed: for seven out of ten defendants, the trial is complete without penalties and restrictions. For the other three, the process continues.

Eight and a half years after the Love Parade disaster with 21 dead Duisburg district court has set the criminal proceedings against seven of ten defendants. For them, the process is completed without penalties and restrictions. This was announced by the court on Wednesday in Düsseldorf.

Three defendants, who should have paid a monetary sum of about 10,000 euros, had rejected a recruitment. The process continues against them now.

21 people died

At the Loveparade in July 2010 in Duisburg, 21 young people were crushed to death and more than 650 were injured in a crush. The process started in December 2017. All defendants had been accused of, among other things, negligent homicide and serious planning mistakes.

The court had proposed hiring in mid-January. The individual guilt of the accused was low or at best regarded as moderate. In addition to planning errors, the court sees a collective failure of many people on the day as co-responsible for the disaster.

Several adjutant lawyers had criticized the attitude in advance. There continues to be a public interest in education, they argued. The father of a dead Loveparade visitor had resisted the decision of the court on Wednesday just before the decision of the court and accused the court errors.

In 2020, prescription comes into effect

Among the seven defendants for whom the trial is now ending are six employees of the city of Duisburg as well as an employee of the Loveparade organizer Lopavent. The three defendants for whom the lawsuit continues were also employed by Lopavent.

As a reason for their consent to hiring the prosecutor’s office had called the fact that on 28 July 2020, the limitation period occurs. The proof program required by law for a judgment can not be completed until then, even in the case of the greatest effort.

Thus, most of the 575 witnesses mentioned in the central expert report would still have to be heard. In the past 14 months, the court heard 59 witnesses and 8 experts.

Relatives in the Loveparade trial
“We wanted a correct education”

The process of disaster at the Loveparade is set against the majority of the defendants. A father names the questions that will probably never be answered.

By Benedikt Müller, Dusseldorf
He is not seeking revenge, emphasizes Klaus-Peter Mogendorf when he appears in public this Wednesday. “First and foremost, we wanted a proper education.” Why did his son Eike die? Why was he crushed in the crowd at the Love Parade, like 20 other people? Why did the building contractors approve the planning, even though they had long doubts? “These are points that we would like to have enlightened, but what seems to be no longer possible,” says Mogendorf.

The district court of Duisburg has closed the Loveparade trial of seven of the ten defendants. The proceedings against six employees of the building authority and the creative director of the promoter Lopavent ends without judgment, because the defendants in the opinion of the court at most a small individual fault. This is what judges and prosecutors see it. Thus, “collective failure” is responsible for the mass panic, in which more than 650 people were injured.

Mogendorf, a civil engineer by profession, wears a dark blue sweater and holds his arms crossed. One owes the criminal process “important insights” over the Loveparade, he says. And yet it was a shock when the court in mid-January had even proposed to stop the proceedings against all ten defendants. “We were stunned, it’s too early for such a conclusion.”

The decisive expert report on the Loveparade contains data from more than 500 witnesses. Only 59 of them have heard the court so far – – was none of them from the building, criticized Mogendorf. “It is indispensable to further investigate these facts,” says the father. However, the court is battling against time: if it does not reach a verdict by July 2020, the allegations of negligent homicide and negligence will become time-barred, exactly ten years after the disaster.

The criminal case now continues against three employees of the event company Lopavent. You have not agreed to a hiring, instead rely on an acquittal. This is also because the judges and the prosecution have closed the proceedings against them only on payment of a fine, because the three defendants – in the preliminary opinion – could make a moderate guilt.

A process without judgment, the father had feared years ago
The advantage of the current decision regarding the limitation period that the court now on the approval of the Love Parade, were responsible for the city employees, no longer have to lay emphasis says Henning Ernst Müller, criminal and criminology professor at the University of Regensburg, the Process scientifically accompanied for years. Müller criticizes the fact that the court has not yet brought in the preliminary expert opinion in the proceedings – although judges, prosecutors and defense lawyers have decided on the basis of the termination of the proceedings. The jury and the public, the report is not yet known.

Another point that Müller addresses: There was no representative of the police to the defendants, complains Müller, although a police cordon chain contributed to the deadly crush. This cause of the catastrophe also names the report – of course as one of many.

Mogendorf had feared that the trial could come to an end without a verdict years ago. His family will complete the process. But the loss of the son and the consequences would remain. “We will suffer the rest of our lives.”

Love Parade process
Court appeals against seven defendants

In the criminal case for the Love Parade disaster with 21 dead Duisburg district court has set the procedure – but not against all defendants.

Eight and a half years after the Love Parade disaster with 21 dead, the Duisburg district court has closed the criminal case against seven of ten defendants. For them, the process is completed without penalties and restrictions. This was announced by the court.

Three defendants, who should have paid a monetary sum of about 10,000 euros, had rejected a recruitment. The process continues against them now.

“I think the setting without conditions for good and right,” said the defender Ingo Bott SPIEGEL. It was the decision to the equivalent of the acquittal, which would not have been possible in this case because of the impending absolute prescription: “Therefore it is the only correct procedural solution.”

Kerstin Stirner, a defender of the then creative director of Lopavent, Kersten Sattler, described the trial as a pure “show trial at the expense of the defendants and ultimately the co-plaintiff”. An individual guilt was not demonstrable for her client.

At the Loveparade in July 2010 in Duisburg, 21 young people were crushed to death and more than 650 were injured in a crush. The process started in December 2017. All defendants had been accused of, among other things, negligent homicide and serious planning mistakes.

Video: The Love Parade of Duisburg – An officially approved disaster?

The court had proposed hiring in mid-January. The individual guilt of the accused was low or at best regarded as moderate. In addition to planning errors, the court sees a collective failure of many people on the day as co-responsible for the disaster.

Several adjutant lawyers had already criticized the attitude in advance. There continues to be a public interest in education, they argued. The father of a dead Loveparade visitor was now disappointed: “There are still many burning questions that are worth clarifying,” said the civil engineer.

Among the seven defendants for whom the trial is now ending are six employees of the city of Duisburg as well as an employee of the Loveparade organizer Lopavent. The three defendants for whom the lawsuit continues were also employed by Lopavent.

As a reason for their consent to hiring the prosecutor’s office had called the fact that in July 2020, the statute of limitations occurs. The required proof program can not be completed until then. Thus, most of the 575 witnesses mentioned in the central expert report would still have to be heard. In the past 14 months, the court heard 59 witnesses and 8 experts.

5th February

Love Parade Process: Prosecutors agree to recruitment proposal

In the Loveparade criminal trial, it has become more likely that the trial will be closed against the majority of the defendants. The prosecution said on Tuesday that it approved the court’s proposal in all cases.

The district court Duisburg had proposed in mid-January, the proceedings against seven defendants without conditions and against three defendants with conditions. If the proceedings are terminated, the accused person is not considered to have a criminal record. The presumption of innocence continues.

The process started in December 2017. The defendants had been accused of, among other things, negligent homicide. At the Loveparade in July 2010 in Duisburg, 21 young people were crushed to death and more than 650 injured in a crush.

As a condition, the public prosecutor’s office called for the payment of a reasonable amount of money, “which should be in the order of about 10,000 euros”. The money should benefit a charitable institution.

Employees of the organizer should receive circulation

The three defendants who are to receive a circulation are three employees of the organizer Lopavent. However, one of them had already stated last week that he would never agree to hiring and wish to continue the process.

After the prosecutor’s opinion, the defense attorney reiterated the position in a meeting break: “Nothing has changed, it stays that way.” It is clear that the case will at least be prosecuted against him.

The remaining seven defendants are the six accused employees of the city of Duisburg and one employee of the organizer.

Whether the other nine defendants will agree to the hiring was initially open. Observers expected their defenders to comment on Tuesday. At the earliest on Wednesday, the court could then separate and discontinue the individual proceedings from the process.

The prosecution had thoroughly examined the court’s proposal. “We have not made the decision easy in light of the serious consequences – 21 dead, more than 650 injured – and the ongoing suffering of the relatives and injured, but consider a recruitment in the end, but reasonable,” said a spokeswoman for the authorities.

Prescription comes into force in 2020

As a reason for the approval, the prosecutor’s office called the fact that on 28 July 2020, the statute of limitations occurs. However, the proof program required by law for a judgment can not be completed by that time. Recently, there were 575 witnesses in this connection who could still be heard.

An attitude of the procedure against the three Lopavent coworkers could not be considered without edition. “Their hypothetical fault is to be settled at preliminary evaluation in the middle range,” it said.

Procedure continues with three defendants

UPDATED ON 05.02.2019

In the Loveparade trial, three defendants have rejected the court’s proposal to cease the process. For seven defendants, however, the process is soon over.

The criminal case for the disaster at the Loveparade 2010 in Duisburg is expected to continue with only three defendants. Against the seven other defendants, the procedure should be discontinued without conditions, at the earliest this Wednesday, as a court spokesman said.

These are the six accused employees of the city of Duisburg and one employee of the organizer Lopavent. Three other employees of the organizers rejected the setting. If the proceedings are terminated, the accused person is deemed not to have a criminal record. The presumption of innocence continues.

The process started in December 2017. The defendants had been accused of, among other things, negligent homicide. At the Loveparade in July 2010 in Duisburg, 21 young people were crushed to death and more than 650 were injured in a crush.

On Tuesday, the 100th main day of the trial was in the mammoth process, which takes place in a Düsseldorf Congress Hall for reasons of space. Originally on Tuesday and Wednesday also a police officer should be questioned. His interrogation should now take place at a later date.

Termination of the process rejected

For one of the defendants who want a sequel, his lawyer said, “He does not renounce his right to be acquitted.” Another defendant had already stated last week that he rejects a hiring. For him, only a conviction, an acquittal or an appointment for limitation would be in question. He does not want to “resign himself to the” fast ending “to the determination of his innocence,” said the lawyer.

In mid-January, the court had asked the prosecutor and the defendant to bring proceedings against seven defendants without money, three against defendants. Reason: According to the history so far, the individual guilt of the accused should be regarded as low or at best moderate.

In addition to planning errors, the court sees a collective failure of many people on the day as co-responsible for the disaster. “There are many guilty parties,” presiding judge Mario Plein had said – it should have “been a multicausal happening”.

21 dead and more than 650 injured

On Tuesday, the prosecution initially declared that it agreed to the court’s recruitment proposal in all cases. “We did not make the decision easy in light of the serious consequences – 21 dead, more than 650 injured – and the continuing suffering of relatives and injured people, but consider a setting in the end justifiable,” said a spokeswoman for the authorities.

As a reason for the approval, the prosecutor’s office called the fact that on 28 July 2020, the statute of limitations occurs. However, the proof program required by law for a judgment can not be completed by that time. Recently, there were 575 witnesses in this connection who could still be heard.

An attitude of the procedure against the three Lopavent coworkers could not be considered without edition, it was said further. “Your hypothetical fault is to be settled in the middle of preliminary evaluation.” As a requirement, the prosecutor’s office had called for the payment of a reasonable cash deposit of about 10 000 €.

How many witnesses will actually be heard in the continuation of the trial against only three defendants, is still open. A few months ago, the court had set trial hearings until the end of April.

3rd February

What’s next?

Loveparade process at the crossroads

DÜSSELDORF Already for the 100th time, the participants of the Loveparade trial will meet for the main hearing this Tuesday in Düsseldorf. 14 months ago, the trial began against ten defendants.

They should be jointly responsible for the fact that on 24 July 2010 on the edge of the Technoparade in Duisburg 21 people were beaten to death and more than 650 injured. The prosecution Duisburg accuses the six employees of the city of Duisburg and the four employees of the organizer Lopavent above all serious planning errors.

Does it matter that the 100th time will be negotiated on Tuesday?

No. It is pure coincidence that the public prosecutor’s office wants to explain exactly on the 100th day of the hearing, what she thinks of the proposal of the district court of Duisburg, to stop the proceedings. Observers expect clear indications as to whether the case against one or more defendants will cease.

In which phase is the process?

In a decisive. In mid-January, the court had suggested to the prosecution and the defendants to discontinue the proceedings against seven defendants without being charged with three defendants. Reason: According to the history so far, the individual guilt of the accused should be regarded as low or at best moderate.

In addition to planning errors, the court sees a collective failure of many people on the day as co-responsible for the disaster. “There are many guilty parties,” chairman Mario Plein had said. It should have “been a multicausal happening,” he explained.

What happens on Tuesday?

By 5 February, 11:59 pm, the defendants and prosecutors have time to comment on the court’s proposal. However, the prosecution has announced that it intends to deliver its opinion on Tuesday morning in the main hearing. After that, the defenders have the floor, and eventually the co-plaintiffs. Otherwise, it is a normal day of negotiations. From 1 pm another policeman is to be heard as a witness.

What does the prosecutor think of the court’s intention?

In mid-January, when the court proposed a suspension, with or without a cash transfer, the agency announced the following day that it considered it “inappropriate” for an unconditional appointment. At the same time, the prosecutors announced that they would carefully consider the board’s arguments.

And the defendants?

One of the ten defendants rejected the proposal last Wednesday. His lawyer explained that the employee of the organizer Lopavent can not imagine a termination of the proceedings – either with or without a cash payment. For him, only a conviction, an acquittal or an appointment for limitation would be in question. He does not want to “resign himself to a” quick end “to have the determination of his innocence,” said his lawyer. The so-called absolute limitation begins at the end of July 27, 2020. Many defendants of the other defendants had hinted in mid-January that they could only be hired without a money order.

What does that mean?

That in any case at least one defendant must be renegotiated, he should stick to his view.

Can the court also oppose the will of an accused?

No. An appointment must be approved by the court, the prosecution and the defendant.

If prosecutors and defendants in the other nine cases have agreed to a cessation with or without a financial guarantee – can the court adjourn the individual proceedings on Tuesday?

No, because the co-plaintiffs have time until midnight to comment.

Would an appointment be possible on Wednesday, the next trial day?

In the case of a setting without conditions: yes. In the case of a setting with editions probably only theoretically. Before a decision, the circulation, ie the payment in cash, must be fulfilled. This should be difficult due to time constraints. Once the court announces the hiring, the trial is over for the defendant in question and he can go.

What happens next?

The court has scheduled meetings a few weeks ago until the end of April and has already invited several witnesses. On Wednesday, the police officer from Tuesday will continue to be interviewed. The next sessions are scheduled for the 12th and 13th of February.

Prosecutors comment on planned process setting

Dusseldorf –

In the Loveparade trial, the public prosecutor’s office wants to comment this Tuesday on the proposal to terminate the proceedings. The court had proposed in mid-January to close the case against seven defendants without being charged with three defendants. After the previous course, the individual guilt of the defendants to be regarded as low or at best medium-heavy, it had justified its advance.

A defendant has already stated that he refuses. For him, only a conviction, an acquittal or an appointment for limitation would be in question. He does not want to “resign himself to a” quick end “to have the determination of his innocence,” said his lawyer. If he sticks to it, the process will in any case continue against him.

If prosecutors and defendants reach an agreement in the other nine cases, the proceedings could be closed and discontinued. On Tuesday, the 100th trial day is in the mammoth process of the deadly crush at the Love Parade 2010 in Duisburg, in which 21 people died. (Dpa / lnw)

2nd February

Loveparade process before hiring: the drama after the drama

The Duisburg district court wants to end the Loveparade trial. Again, the German justice threatens to capitulate in a major case – as after the thalidomide scandal or the ICE accident of Eschede. Why is that? And what does that mean for the relatives? A damage report.

And that should have been everything now? The long wait, the many days in the court, the witnesses, reports, all in order not to be guilty in the end? The father, who lost his daughter in the disaster, 29 years old, his only child, does not want to believe it.
“It can not be that no one is responsible,” says the man, Klaus Cornehl he is called, after the court has set the procedure. “As if this was a trivial offense.” Another, Heinrich Löwen, lost his wife in the accident. “The victims are once again damaged,” he says about this day.
It is now 16 years since the two men said these sentences. It was in the spring of 2003, shortly after the district court Lüneburg had decided to end the process of the ICE disaster in Eschede after 52 days of negotiations. So these are old, as it were historical, sentences, but in Dusseldorf quite similar ones are again, and they are spoken with the same bitterness.
“More than a slap in the face, this process was not”

“The process is closed without result, as one feared from the beginning,” says Nadia Zanacchi, whose 21-year-old daughter Giulia was killed in the 2010 Love Parade disaster. “More than a slap in the face for all this process was not,” says Jörn pond, who was injured in the accident itself. How the sentences are alike.
Unless anything very surprising happens, this process, in which the two appeared as co-plaintiffs, is about to end prematurely – after almost 100 days of negotiations, without judgment. The process was to clarify who is to blame for the Love Parade disaster, in July 2010 in Duisburg crushed 21 people and 650 were injured.
For this reason, six employees of the city of Duisburg and four of the organizer Lopavent have been standing in front of Duisburg Regional Court for more than eight months – which has moved to the Düsseldorf Congress Hall, especially for the numerous co-plaintiffs and their lawyers.

“Slightly”? At 21 dead?

According to presiding judge Mario Plein, there are many good reasons for hiring. Thus, in North Rhine-Westphalia in 2010 no clear laws for major events existed. In addition, blame and responsibility for the tragedy spread so many places and shoulders that it is difficult to identify individual culprits.
In the end, for seven of the defendants it now amounts to a low, for the remaining three defendants on “middle guilt” addition. The procedure could then be set “for insignificance”, that is the wording in the law.
“Slightly”? At 21 dead? 650 injured? Can anyone seriously demand that fathers and mothers whose sons and daughters lost their lives in Duisburg on July 24, 2010, who stifled their agony in the throng, could even grasp a tiny bit of understanding for such a decision?

It would not be the first time that the justice surrenders to tragedies of this size. From 1957 to 1961 the company Grünenthal from Stolberg near Aachen drove the tranquilizer Contergan, which caused severe birth defects in the unborn child. In 1968, the regional court of Aachen opened the trial against nine responsible of Grünenthal.
312 injured were admitted as co-plaintiff, also here the court had to rent a hall, the casino of the Eschweiler mine association. On 18 December 1970, after 283 days of trial, the case was closed. Because of “insignificance of guilt”.
The fire on the arrivals level of Terminal A at Düsseldorf Airport in 1996 killed 17 people and 88 were injured. The trigger was welding work, the deeper causes of lack of fire protection during construction, lack of security precautions, on top of that came even the fire department too late. The trial against craftsmen and construction managers was discontinued in 2001 – because it was not possible to determine which of the many bad things the disaster ultimately had decisively promoted.

The last chapter of a messed-up workup

And also the case against three engineers after the ICE disaster in Eschede ended prematurely in 2003. The defendants only had to pay fines. 93 witnesses and 16 experts had heard the court until then. It was considered unlikely that a year-long continuation of the process would prove more guilty.
By the way, the relatives of the victims are not allowed to have a say in the hiring process. The end of the Loveparade trial depends only on prosecutors and defense. If they agree on a fine, the process ends.
The Loveparade process of Dusseldorf is the last chapter of a messed up from the beginning. A committee of inquiry could have clarified the political responsibility. Who exerted pressure to adorn themselves with the splendor of a major event, for example. It did not exist because a majority in the state parliament feared the findings.
Above all hovers the imminent statute of limitations

The judiciary refused a trial at the first attempt. A first opinion raised more questions than there were answers. And right from the start, the current process suffered because the police, the Lopavent boss Rainer Schaller and Duisburg’s former mayor Adolf Sauerland never had to answer for this tragedy. Although, from the perspective of many, they are among those responsible.
And should this last attempt to get hold of someone just end? This process, which was said to bring the truth to light?
The end, in spite of everything, would be understandable, even consistent. Much speaks against the continuation. More than 500 witnesses would have to be heard – a huge effort for a foreseeable narrow result: the defendants threaten at best still monetary or low probation. And above all, hovering the impending statute of limitations: In the next year, ten years after the disaster, the prosecution collapses anyway.

But on the other side there are the relatives with their desire for education and responsibility. The lawyer Marcus Brink represents in the process two co-plaintiffs, who were injured in the Love Parade. “As a lawyer, I can explain the attitude of the proceedings,” he says. “As a citizen, I can not understand them.” The court is in a “dilemma,” says former Federal Interior Minister Gerhart Baum.
The dilemma is a situation where there is no right or wrong. But only bad or less bad. Baum and his colleague Julius Reiter represent more than 80 relatives and victims in the process. Together, they both want to propose a reform model if the court actually stops the process in the coming days.
First of all, investigators and courts would need more time for such complex cases in case of doubt. “We must, with great caution, come to the statute of limitations,” demands Baum. The statute of limitations of an offense is important for the legal peace, he emphasizes. But in particularly complex cases, it must be possible to finish a process already begun in peace. “The Enlightenment must not fail to strict deadlines.”
Central prosecution for major proceedings

In addition, Baum and Reiter demand the establishment of specialized public prosecutors, who could specialize in large-scale proceedings, as in the case of white-collar crime.
These are attempts to prevent justice from failing in such large cases. That justice and justice diverge too far. And that the survivors, in addition to their pain, still have to endure the feeling that guilt has not been named, the truth has not been determined.
Last year, the Eschede disaster celebrated its 20th anniversary. That those responsible were not convicted at the time, a mother said, whose son had died on the train, still filled her with anger. Even now, after such a long time.
By Thorsten Fuchs

Love Parade Process: Prosecutors comment on the setting

In the Love Parade process, the prosecutor’s office wants to comment on Tuesday to propose a termination of the proceedings. The court had proposed closing the lawsuit against seven defendants without charge against three defendants. The individual guilt of the accused was to be regarded as low or at best moderate, it was justified. A defendant has already stated that he refuses. If prosecutors and defendants reach an agreement in the other nine cases, the proceedings could be closed and discontinued.

30th January

Love Parade process is likely to continue


The first of ten defendants has commented on the court’s proposal to close the case. He probably wants to reach an acquittal for himself. The chances are not good.

he process of the Love Parade disaster is expected to continue. As the spokesman for Duisburg District Court said on Wednesday in Dusseldorf, one of the defendants has told the court that he can imagine a job neither with nor without a cash. In a legal dispute with defense lawyers, state and Nebeklägeranwälten the 6th Grand Penal Chamber of Duisburg Regional Court had set out in mid-January that they were the criminal justice processing of the disaster, in July 2010, 21 young people on the way to the techno spectacle Love Parade were killed and more than 600 other people were injured, without judgment wants to end.

For seven of the defendants, the court proposed a sentence without any requirement because of “foreseeable lower” individual guilt. For the other three defendants, the court, after preliminary examination, assumed a “middle guilt”. For her, the board proposed a hiring against a fine. The other defendants and the prosecution have until 5 February to comment on the recruitment proposal of the court. The Chamber may only terminate the proceedings in each case with the approval of the prosecutor and the respective defendant. The accused are employees of the city of Duisburg, who were entrusted with the approval of the Love Parade on the former freight yard of the city and six employees of the private operator Lopavent. One of these four Lopavent employees is the defendant, who has now spoken out against the cessation of proceedings.

The defendant should be concerned with acquitting an acquittal. Whether this strategy works out, however, is questionable even with regard to the calendar. Also some of the defense lawyers had pointed out after the legal discussion in the middle of January that they see only small chances for acquittals, because in the complicated procedure not to be counted before the tenth anniversary of the disaster with a judgment and the process so in the statute of limitations run will.

The presiding judge Mario Plein had said in mid-January in his justification for the recruitment proposal, although the nearly 100 main negotiation days in the large-scale case since December 2017 had “contributed significantly to clarifying the events at the event”. At the same time Plein had also made it clear how difficult the criminal assignment of individual guilt might be. Because in addition to planning errors, the disaster from the perspective of the chamber was caused by collective failure of many people on the day of the event. Two weeks ago, for example, Plein pointed to the police chain set up at the wrong time on the access ramp to the festival grounds, or the uncoordinated openings of the separating facilities a few hundred meters in front of it. “There are many guilty ones,” Plein had said.

Love Parade process
A defendant rejects the termination of the proceedings

Duisburg / Düsseldorf In the Loveparade trial, one of the ten defendants rejected the court’s proposal to close the case. The defendant is an employee of the organizer Lopavent. Against him then would have to be negotiated further.

If the accused, who should have been the organizer’s agent, stick to this attitude, the court will continue the case against him, explained a spokesman for the Duisburg district court. An attitude of the procedure against the nine other defendants remains however possible. For this, the 5th of February has to wait as deadline.

Until next Tuesday, the prosecution and the defendants still have time to make their statements on a possible termination of the process. For each of the ten defendants, the court then has to examine whether there are consistent declarations from the prosecution and the respective defense lawyers, as the court spokesman explained.

The court had two weeks ago after nearly 100 negotiation days proposed a termination of the proceedings. It is true that there is still a reasonable likelihood that the accused might be proved to have a share of the charges against them. But it also turned out that the assessment of the suitability of the venue and the flow of visitors had been flawed, the judge justified his initiative. This too was probably responsible for the death of 21 people on 24 July 2010 and the injuries of a few hundred people.

The current safety regulations for major events did not exist then. At that time, the defendants were largely forced to draw up their own regulations. Because many organizations and people were involved in the planning and implementation of the Loveparade at that time, the disaster was probably due to a “collective failure in the implementation phase”.

In court are four employees of the promoter Lopavent and six employees of the city of Duisburg, including the former Baudezernent. Among other things, they have to answer for negligent homicide and negligence. In a mass panic on the Techno Festival died on July 24, 2010 in Duisburg 21 people, more than 600 were injured. Due to its size, the main proceedings do not take place in the rooms of the Duisburg regional court, but in the Düsseldorf exhibition halls.

Loveparade process continues
Frank Preuss
30.01.2019 – 12:27 clock


The process of the Love Parade drama will probably continue now. One of the defendants does not agree to a termination of the proceedings.

The court had proposed stopping the Loveparade trial two weeks ago because the individual guilt of each defendant was small or at most moderate. But the proposal will probably be nothing: The Berlin lawyer Ioannis Zaimis said yesterday in the process in Dusseldorf, his client could imagine no attitude to the proceedings, neither without conditions nor with a monetary payment. The security officer of the organizer Lopavent wants to be negotiated until the end, whether it comes to an acquittal, a conviction or a statute of limitations.

Everyone must agree

However, both prosecution and all defendants must agree to stop the process. By 5 February they must have commented.

Court spokesman Matthias Breidenstein stated on demand that the process would theoretically continue with only one defendant if all others agreed to a hiring and he remains in his position.

At the Loveparade on 24 July 2010 in Duisburg 21 people died, 652 were injured. Since December 2017, the criminal proceedings against six employees of the city of Duisburg and four employees of the organizer Lopavent.

Volte in the Loveparade process

January 30, 2019, 6:35 pm

The trial for the Love Parade tragedy is unlikely to be complete. The defender of one of the ten defendants, an employee of the organizer company, had stated that his client could not imagine a setting – either with or without a cash payment, said a spokesman for the Duisburg district court. This would mean that further negotiations would have to be held against him. The court had made the proposal because the individual guilt of each defendant was at most moderate.

24th January

Loveparade Duisburg: district court proposes process setting

By Elisabeth Zimmermann and Dietmar Gaisenkersting
January 24, 2019

21 young people are dead, hundreds injured and traumatized, caused by the negligence and greed of wheelers, supported by the responsible of the city of Duisburg. But if it goes by the will of the district court of Duisburg, no one will be held accountable. The more than eight years of ongoing scandalous behavior of city officials, law enforcement officials and now the court is coming to a bitter end.
Last week Wednesday, the presiding judge of Duisburg district court Mario Plein announced that in a so-called legal dispute he had proposed to the representatives of the prosecution, the defense and the representatives of the co-plaintiffs the early termination of the Loveparade proceedings. The trial deals with the question of who bears responsibility for the dead and injured in the Love Parade on 24 July 2010 in Duisburg.
As justification called Judge Plein the only “minor” or “middle” guilt of the ten defendants. Pursuant to Article 135 of the Code of Criminal Procedure, a defendants’ “minor guilt” case may be terminated with or without a fine.
A small public interest, another reason that allows the termination of proceedings, led Judge Plein not. Because the interest is very large internationally. Of the 21 young people who died at the Love Parade disaster in Duisburg eight and a half years ago, 15 came from Germany, two from Spain and one each from Australia, the Netherlands, Italy and China.
The deadly throng on the ramp of the entrance and exit of the festival, according to Plein’s argument, had been a “multicausal event”. The Love Parade should never have been approved, but even on the day of the event, according to Judge Plein, the death of 21 people could have been prevented. A large number of planning mistakes and breakdowns on the day of the event contributed to the catastrophe. In other words, there are so many people in charge that there are no guilty parties.
The parents of the dead, who appear as co-plaintiffs in the process, reacted dismayed. Like all litigants, they have time to decide on the court’s proposal until the beginning of February.
Paco Zapater had come specially from Spain with his wife. His daughter Clara was studying in Germany before she suffocated in the crush of the Love Parade. Her father now said: “Clara had confidence in Germany, I’m just losing it.” If the trial were to be prematurely terminated on the grounds of “only minor guilt” to the defendants, it would be “like a second death of my daughter.”
Even Klaus-Peter Mogendorf, whose son Eike lost his life in Duisburg, indignant over the proposal of Prozessinstellung. His lawyer Rainer Dietz said: “You should use the time you have left to continue your education. Breaking away halfway would be tragic again. “Another attorney for the co-plaintiff, Franz Paul, stated,” Insignificance is out of the question for 21 dead. “
An even bigger slap in the face of relatives might be another argument of the court, namely the time pressure. Because the statute of limitations for negligent homicide ends on 27 July 2020. After that no one can be convicted under the law. Allegedly, there are still 575 witnesses who would have to be heard by then. This was impossible to achieve, argued the court chaired by Plein.
This time pressure is solely due to the behavior of those responsible – right from the start. The tragedy of the Love Parade was not a misfortune, but a crime, as we wrote immediately afterwards. Rainer Schaller, owner of the festival organizer Lopavent and the fitness chain McFit, as well as the political leaders in Duisburg – especially the then Lord Mayor Adolf Sauerland (CDU) – had unscrupulously ignored the concerns and warnings of experts in the planning. Both expected high profits and a better image for the city.
When it came to the planned disaster, both – Lopavent and the city – rejected any responsibility. Sauerland even went to the day after the Love Parade to make the victims themselves responsible.
For nearly four years, the Procuratorate Duisburg then “investigated” and only brought charges for the first time in early 2014, true to the principle: “The little ones are hanged, the big ones are let go.”

Among the defendants were missing the main responsible, Lord Mayor Sauerland and McFit boss Schaller. It was not even investigated against her. And also the procedure against Sauerlands Ordnungsdezernenten Wolfgang Rabe (CDU), who had brutally durchgeboxt the Loveparade in the city administration against all doubts, had been set.
Even from the ranks of the police nobody was charged. The then North Rhine-Westphalia Minister of the Interior Ralf Jäger (SPD), who was in the police operations center at the time of the catastrophe and left the Loveparade grounds via the VIP exit shortly after the disaster, declared at a special session of the NRW Interior Committee: ” I will not allow the police to serve as a scapegoat for the mistakes and omissions of others. “The Duisburg prosecutor had understood Jager’s warning.
Now judges Plein just the police action a fair complicity. Only through this “dutiful, culpable behavior of others” the disaster was made possible. For example, a chain of police that locked the stairway from the tunnel to the event site in the hour before the onset of mass panic contributed to the formation of the “heap of people” in which the 21 people died. On top of that, in the worst of crowds, a police car rolled into the death zone and increased the pressure.
Because initially only against “small fish” was determined, the process would have almost come off. Only a campaign by Gabi Müller, whose then 25-year-old son died in the Loveparade, forced the district court to write a lawsuit. 367,000 people supported Gabi Müller’s online petition, thereby making a major contribution to the Dusseldorf Higher Regional Court’s decision in 2017 to order the Duisburg Regional Court to open the case. Finally, six city employees and four Lopavent employees were charged.
Against seven of them, six employees of the city and a so-called creative director of the organizer Lopavent, the criminal proceedings for “low debt” should be terminated. They would have approved and organized the deadly festival, but on the day of the disaster they had no chance to avert it.
Against three defendants of the company Lopavent the process is to be set because of “middle guilt”. According to Richter Plein, they were “active in operational positions” on the festival day and could have saved lives by better organization and communication. Their defense attorneys and prosecutors are expected to negotiate whether and how much they will make a cash payment. But this is expressly no repentance and certainly not an acknowledgment of guilt.
If the criminal proceedings are actually discontinued without a conviction, this should make it more difficult, if not impossible, for further civil proceedings.
When it came to capitalize on the failure and the ruthlessness of Sauerland and in Duisburg (with the Greens) CDU capital, was specifically changed by the then red-green state government in North Rhine-Westphalia, the municipal election law (“Lex Sauerland”) so Sauerland could be voted out and replaced by Sören Link (SPD).
Now, not a single responsible for the death of 21 young people is to be held accountable. Gabi Müller, who had been waiting for the process for a long time, told the Süddeutsche Zeitung that she was primarily concerned with education. This she owe her dead son Christian. She says that one has to change the laws in such a way that those responsible for catastrophes do not escape without punishment. But none of the responsible parties – neither in the NRW state parliament nor in the Bundestag – has an interest.

20th January 2019

End of a disaster

The expectations of the district court Duisburg were huge. But criminal law reaches its limits in a process such as the Loveparade.


The Duisburg Regional Court has been dealing with the charges for the 2010 Love Parade disaster for almost a hundred days, and now it intends to stop the trial. Employees of the organizer are to pay a cash deposit, the administrative staff involved in the permit, get it without any action. That would be the balance of the rule of law after 21 dead and hundreds of partially seriously injured on the grounds of the former freight yard.

There will probably be no one who satisfied this result. For many who outrage it. The perceived justice and justice produced, they could not be further apart. The fate of the victims in the throng, multiplied by the tragedy of their relatives, has led to losses that are unpaid.

It’s a drama for everyone, including the defendants

But is that the right bill? It is striking that in response to the request of the court an important factor is missing or mentioned only marginally: The offense, for which the defendants must answer. It is the negligent homicide, paragraph 222 Penal Code. An offense without a minimum sentence, a legal offense. The maximum is five years imprisonment, which is rarely exhausted. An act with dramatic consequences for victims, but no serious offense. No one had wanted people to die in the mass panic. It’s a drama for everyone. Also for the accused.

To suspend such a procedure, without sanction, without judgment, belongs to the everyday life of the criminal justice. To set a different standard for the Loveparade process because the dimension of the accident and the attention to it was different would be unjustifiable. Clearer: It would be unfair. This also applies to the assessment of a “public interest” which, according to the Code of Criminal Procedure, must not preclude an attitude, but is not to be confused with a general public interest. As hard as it sounds, this interest has largely been resolved. The events of that time are worked up in detail, the causes, the course and the contributions are known. No aspects of special or general prevention can be identified. A major event with a single tunnel access, as planned at the time, would not be approved today.

19th January 2019

The Loveparade process as an extreme case

If prosecutors and defense agree, the Loveparade trial could be terminated in early February. A suggestion that triggered outrage – but in the end is logical, comments Moritz Küpper. In this extreme case, the system reaches its limits.

By Moritz Küpper

Now it goes on, as if nothing had happened: For the end of January is negotiated 98 day – in the criminal case for the Love Parade disaster. It will be another day in an unprecedented mammoth process – but its outcome has been well established since this week. If prosecution and defense agree, then we will set the procedure in early February, the court’s proposal. A proposal that caused indignation in many places, but is ultimately consistent.
The reasoning of the judges can be summarized briefly and succinctly as follows: Because so many people have made so many mistakes, the individual guilt of the accused can hardly be determined. On this basis, nobody can be convicted in a criminal trial. In short, the system reaches its limits in such an extreme case.
Many people, many mistakes
Besides there is probably another – probably more important – reason, which can be worked out by a simple calculation. The process has been going on for just over a year, and nearly 60 witnesses have been interviewed so far. Nearly 600 are still on a list and the time frame for their survey is extremely close, because in one and a half years, the allegations will be barred. Therefore, now this end – and somehow it fits.

Because: many people, many mistakes. This is a summary that applies not only to the direction and planning of the event, not only for this criminal process, but also for the entire period of reconditioning. For a long time, for this now eight and a half years lasting period, has found a formulation that was constantly repeated: the, of the disaster after the disaster.

An endless nightmare
The evidence for this statement – they are so numerous, how painful, so that one can only guess how it has to go to the relatives and the affected. Already bruised as hard as possible, the impression of a never-ending nightmare seems almost inevitable.

It began with the then North Rhine-Westphalia Interior Minister Ralf Jäger quickly after the disaster in front of the police. Their use and mistakes, however, which today is considered secure, are one of the causes of the tragedy. In addition, there were other points: A change of state government immediately before, which prevented a parliamentary work-up, as all the parties were involved.

A Lord Mayor of Duisburg, who refused to take responsibility and was voted out by his own people in an unprecedented process by citizenship. A prosecutor who got tangled up in the selection of appraisers and let so much valuable time pass. A criminal court at the regional court Duisburg, which rejected a Prozesseröffnung only and then afterwards by the higher regional court Duesseldorf had to be condemned to it.

All this was ultimately not cured by this criminal process. Nevertheless, this process has shown that courts can work: the many days of negotiations have provided for clarification. The judges have found answers. Answers to the questions of why people died, why people were injured, why it came to this disaster. There are many answers. And they are sometimes complex. But the required enlightenment has taken place, at least in part.
Continue with refurbishment on another level
And therefore, after all the catastrophes after the catastrophe, and irrespective of the further, probably subsequent, civil-law steps, one should seriously consider whether it would not make sense to continue this good work-up on another level. For example, by a commission of inquiry, similar to the one that worked up the Hillsborough disaster in the UK.
At a football match in Sheffield, England in April 1989 96 fans were killed, more than 700 spectators were injured. Decades later, the commission of inquiry worked out important causes that were not known until then. It was an act of social pacification and reconciliation – despite the lack of legal consequences.

The call for such a body, which was welcomed by many stakeholders, is not new. Politically, they have always been rejected, with reference to the legal work-up. This reason will now be dropped, the demand is thus more topical than ever. It would be a sign – after all the many mistakes.

18th January 2019

The small step to disaster

The criminal case because of the Love Parade disaster 2010 should be set, the bereaved and the public get no guilty. That may seem unsatisfactory to many – it is not wrong.

A column by Thomas Fischer

It is reported that the competent criminal court of the district court of Duisburg has proposed to terminate the trial against the defendants in the criminal case concerning the Love Parade disaster of 24 July 2010. In this case, this is due to two provisions of the Code of Criminal Procedure (StPO), which have different preconditions:

Paragraph 153 (2) (in conjunction with para. 1) StPO:

“If the claim has already been brought, the court may, with the agreement of the prosecution and the accused, terminate the proceedings (if the offender’s guilt is minor and there is no public interest in the persecution)”,

Section 153a para. 2 (in conjunction with para. 1) StPO:

“If the claim has already been brought, the court may, with the consent of the prosecutor and the defendant, temporarily suspend the proceedings, and at the same time impose conditions and instructions on the accused (…) (if they are likely to eliminate the public interest in prosecution) , and the gravity of the guilt does not preclude.If the accused meets the conditions and instructions, the deed can no longer be prosecuted as an offense.) “
Although co-plaintiffs have the right to comment on relevant suggestions. Their approval is not important; they can not prevent a hiring and also not to challenge. As conditions, inter alia, cash benefits to charitable institutions or to the public purse as well as compensation for damages come into consideration. Of these regulations, which have introduced the so-called “opportunity principle” into law enforcement since 1975 as exceptions to the persecution obligation (principle of legality), prosecutors and courts use hundreds of thousands of times a year. When they were introduced, they were not the result of new findings on the criminal liability or the law of evidence, but an expression of the “simplification” of the procedures and efforts to cope with the millions of criminal cases.

Over the decades, much criticism has been made of this possibility of suspending criminal proceedings for “opportunity reasons”. It transfers criminal sanctions power to the public prosecutor’s offices, in other words administrative authorities (in the case of paragraph 153a), favor wealthy offenders who offer and pay high fines can undermine the rather strong right of evidence of the StPO in favor of a rough “impression” of evidence and possible procedural issue. Some also criticize the fact that the provision for enforcing large fines is misappropriated in the case of mere suspicions, for example, where the execution of extensive and lengthy criminal proceedings can have an existence-destroying effect on suspects (especially in white-collar criminal law).

On the other hand, attitudes of course offer many advantages to most of the accused: no charges and no public trial if the appointment is already made by the prosecution, no trial if it takes place before the main proceedings are opened by the court; no guilty verdict. Procedural attitudes, including those against restrictions, are not considered “criminal records” and will not be recorded in the central register. Almost everyone who is being prosecuted for the first time for an offense (statutory minimum sentence of less than one year) is happy to be offered a job.


Both regulations prescribe “guilt”: in the case of the non-sanctioned attitude under clause 153, it must be “low”; in the case of hiring under clause 153a, their “gravity must not conflict”. This means, on the one hand, that “innocence” is not an opportunity attitude, but a cessation of proceedings in the absence of suspicion (at the public prosecutor’s office), a non-opening of the main proceedings (article 204 StPO, after indictment) or an acquittal (after admission of the indictment and main trial) got to. In practice, there is a considerable gray area of ​​mere suspicion sanctions. It is not out of the fact that for more complicated issues public prosecutor’s office or court just once in the fog of ignorance into an “offer” make, combined with the delicate hint, if one (further) determine, will (probably) already “something penalized come out.” Some accused, even if he considers himself innocent, preferring to take out a loan rather than plunge into the adventure of a trial following this prognosis – possibly with the judge who has already threatened him with the “something” alternative.

What is meant by the “guilt” at this point? Of course, it is not about moral, moral, social guilt, but (criminal) legal ones. Their requirements arise from the respective facts of the Criminal Code (StGB), in two ways. On the one hand, these facts capture different degrees of guilt: a serious robbery contains more objective “injustice”, but also more personal “guilt” than a shoplifting. On the other hand, the individual guilt measures within the scope of the individual facts are very different. The measure of evil intent or breach of duty, the motives, the execution of the offense, the history of the accused, and others, differ in every case, and lead to different judgments of guilt, even if the actual fact is the same. Above all, today’s offenses contain very large, sometimes even excessively wide criminal “frameworks” within which the respective “debt measure” should determine the upper limit of the sentence. Fixed penalties provided by law exist only in the exceptional case of the “absolute” punishment, ie the life imprisonment.


The accused of Duisburg are charged with acts of negligence. Here, and especially in negligence with serious consequences (negligent homicide), the definitions of legal and moral guilt often collide hard and painful. For the survivors of a dead person, but also often for a public solidarisende public stands, of course, the suffering of the victim and the loss in the center of the assessment. And this loss is not relativizable. He therefore has no rational relation to the accusation of negligence from the outset.

Negligence means: not intentional, that is, acting neither intentionally nor in the knowledge and expectation of actual success, and not having risked and “approved” this success indifferently. You can be negligent in two different ways: recognizing the possibility of harm, but still believing it will not come in (that’s called deliberate negligence), or ignoring the possibility of harm (unconscious negligence). In both cases, a guilty verdict for negligence presupposes, on the one hand, an (objective) breach of duty of care, and, on the other hand, a (personal) failure of the accused person: she must have been able, on a case-by-case basis, to have her own skills, knowledge, etc. to fulfill the (objective) duty.

That sounds very abstract and is it for the moment. It is an attempt to bring the extraordinary complexity and complexity of life processes and events into a conceptual system that allows reasonably fair processing of claims. We must (and want to) distinguish between “coincidence” and “guilt,” misfortune and failure.

Because there is another, opposite view of things: that of the accused. From his point of view, there is often a blatant discrepancy between his behavior and the factual success: Apparently tiny negligence has led to terrible results, which one did not want and whose risk one either considered manageable or did not even recognize. Very often, the damage caused by such negligence is a mere coincidence for the accused: 10,000 motorists drive past a school a little too fast; in the tens of thousands, a child runs into the street and is killed. For the parents of this child, this relation is not important; the accused motorist nevertheless often feels like a “scapegoat” for a failure that actually affects everyone else as well: he has acted no more and no less “guilty” than anyone else who now indignantly sees him as a “child killer” punished as severely as possible want.

The more the causal relationships of an event split, are in mutual dependencies, routines, relationships of trust and reciprocal relations, the more difficult it is not only the exact determination of the one decisive moment of error, but also the determination of the individual guilt of all involved. Often causes and effects are so far apart that one can no longer measure “guilt”, at any rate with our principles. Behavior is then still “somehow” the cause, but no longer “imputable”: No manager of a tobacco or schnapps manufacturer is accused of millions of deliberate manslaughter, no politician of the rich countries for millions of (cruel) murder of the hungry in the poorest countries. When right-wing or left-wing thugs violate dissenters, many citizens immediately claim that this is a direct result of “hate commentary” and exclusion – which they, however, soon re-run. Nevertheless, they would be surprised if they were accused of (at least) negligent involvement in the deeds. Nobody accused the governing mayor of Berlin and 20 members of the Senate administration of negligent homicide because they did not allow the Breitscheidplatz Christmas market to be protected on time with massive concrete bollards. And the employees of the security authorities, who let the perceptibly dangerous perpetrator run around, do not sit on indictment boards.

Public interest

Negligence often involves a contradiction between different levels of experience and appraisal: grave, often downright catastrophic and irreparable damage on the one hand, minor negligence on the other. What are the “interests” of those involved is obvious: survivors of fatalities often formulate that they want “certainty about the causes” of the event. That may be true in some cases; but probably this is not the core of the need. When a misfortune happens to us, we want to find a “reason” and a responsibility for it. “Somebody has to be to blame” for such a catastrophic event as the Love Parade 2010. And there is a strong desire to at least symbolically portray this guilt: in a guilty verdict that is “final,” validating the assignment of responsibility to the whole society indisputably. Nobody will come back to life – everybody knows that. But it would not be unbearable to those affected alone if, with this argument and a shrug, one closes the files or does not open them at all.

However, the closer they get to the details, the connections often prove to be really difficult and much more confusing than the more woodcut-like curtailments of public perception or even the selective choice of facts in an indictment suggest. It can be disproportionate, and therefore unjust, if it happens that the one perpetrator who has not given a failure that led to a damage event in a direct chain of causes, without interference from other causes, contributory negligence, influences, even victim behavior to pick out a few out of the multitude of possibly negligent causers, so to speak “vicariously” and to want to unload on them all the guilt and incomprehensibility of collective failure.

The Duisburg Regional Court had probably already seen that in March 2016 it initially rejected the opening of the main hearing. At that time, the Prime Minister of North Rhine-Westphalia stated on record that she respects the independence of the judiciary, but wants to express “as a human being Hannelore Kraft” that the decision for her was “difficult to grasp”. That was, of course, the opposite of a “respect for independence”, as usual in such statements, and, besides that, an unpleasantly populist emphasis on the general conviction that, whatever the case, it must be a “work-up”.

However, it is not the task, and in most cases not the ability, of the criminal justice system to “work it up,” even less so the more complicated the circumstances and the network of causes. Criminal proceedings, by their very nature, are always a very limited constriction: the infinite multitude of causes, relationships, responsibilities, failures, efforts, intentions, and coincidences are focused on one single point: Was it the accused? Is he the one person who blames society for what happened and to whom it can summon responsibility? This is a fairly limited view – not at all remote, but often pitifully helpless in reality.

In the quoted statement of the “human Hannelore force”, which stands for many, expresses a certain understanding of what is meant by the “public interest” in the sense of paragraphs 153 and 153a StPO. It appears here as a mixture of general interest in information and empathic attribution need, as mere description of the requirement that it simply should not be that no one is really “guilty”.

But that is only one side of the “public interest”. Because it only describes the interest of the real, empirical public as a “population”. But there is also a public interest, which feeds on rules and legal principles: The public’s interest may be huge, private details from the lives of politicians to learn – in the “public interest” is certainly not. The position of the accused is also part of an interest that can be described as a judgmental summary of different needs and rights from a proportionality perspective. Let’s take an example: A woman leaves the kitchen for half a minute where there is a pot of boiling water on the stove. Her three-year-old baby pulls the pot off the stove and suffers severe scalding. This is a negligent homicide (clause 222 StGB). The public would certainly be very interested in learning all about this tragedy. Nevertheless, one will find it right to stop the criminal case against the perpetrator, who is severely traumatized for her whole life, because of “low guilt” or because “the severity of guilt does not conflict”.

Preliminary result

Is the procedure set? – News Video

The trial for the Love Parade disaster in Duisburg could be stopped. The prosecution is now investigating whether the proceedings will continue. Members of the victims criticize this sharply.

Law is not always fair

It was clear early on that the Loveparade trial would not be fair. That there is no verdict is more than unsatisfactory.

So that’s it. Eight and a half years after the Love Parade disaster, the legal work-up comes to a bitter end. The district court Duisburg wants to stop the process, which it had never wanted, now after almost one hundred days of negotiations. Thus, a criminal case is about to graduate, which was from the beginning under no good star.
The fact that it had taken until December 2017 until the main trial against the ten defendants finally started after fierce scramble was an impertinence for the survivors of the 21 dead, for the more than 650 injured and the countless traumatized festival visitors. Now they must also painfully realize that justice and law are sometimes not identical.

It was clear from the outset that the court would not be able to find a just verdict. For more than six former employees of the city of Duisburg and four of the organizer Lopavent should have been sitting in the dock. But that there is no more judgment, is more than unsatisfactory.
After all, the judges should not be accused of not having tried to enlightenment. Meticulously they reconstructed what happened on that July 24, 2010. The evidence has confirmed that a fatal mixture of megalomania, incompetence and irresponsibility led to the disaster. Not least responsible for this were the organizer Rainer Schaller and the mayor of Duisburg, Adolf Sauerland, who made a miserable appearance as a witness in court.
The deadly mass panic on the Love Parade was not a fateful event for which no guilty party could be found. Unfortunately, that does not mean that you can prove that you have a specific guilt in the legal sense. But at least seven years ago, the Duisburg citizens forced Sauerland to forcefully take over the political responsibility he did not want to take over. At least that.

Love Parade Process: Hard to bear

It will be frustrating for people who have lost a loved one during the Love Parade disaster that the process may be discontinued. Without anyone assuming responsibility without convicting a culprit. However, the process has shown how difficult it is to name individuals and their guilt, but in the end it was a chain of failures that led to destruction. After all, there has been this process, it still exists, despite great resistance and as cumbersome as lengthy investigations. The will to enlightenment was there, and much of what went wrong has come to light during this process. The process is thus a reminder to exercise the greatest possible care. And maybe subsequent organizers can profit from this, maybe the insights will flow into new guidelines. This is no consolation for those affected, but the process may help prevent such a disaster from repeating itself

The district court of Duisburg seems to have made things easy. It suggested to those involved in the proceedings in a so-called legal discussion to prematurely dissolve the criminal proceedings for the Love Parade 2010 – too complex, too complex the events, too difficult to fathom the question of guilt. Given the hoped-for improvement of the catastrophe with 21 dead, this is a serious blow for the relatives. From a defense standpoint, attitude is the only viable option. She argues with the heavy burden on her clients and joins the court: prosecution should not be an end in itself. Meanwhile, there are opportune reasons for them to give up the originally intended acquittals. Burden? What does that mean for the relatives of the dead?

What should the severely traumatized people, who just made it out of the deadly crush, do with this argument? Possibly, comparisons forbid here. The defendants have been living with blame for quite some time. Whether some of them now carry a low, medium or high debt, it is difficult to say from the outside. At any rate, one can understand the survivors who are now claiming in Düsseldorf that no one is at fault on the opposite side. Some people find it difficult to bear this turn. Six employees of the city of Duisburg, four of the event company Lopavent, sit on the dock. They are accused of, among other things, negligent homicide and negligent assault. Who does not sit in the dock: Duisburg ex-mayor Adolf Sauerland and chief organizer Rainer Schaller.

For the education they have contributed as witnesses little to nothing. “No knowledge, do not know, can not remember.” For the benefit of those who stand in front of him, the court now considers a tangle of factors. Thus, there were neither legal nor organizational requirements for the construction of a major event as in Duisburg at the time of the crime. Accordingly, it was a collective failure. The presiding judge talked about the division of police chains on the access ramp to the festival grounds. The measure additionally narrowed the amount. In addition, they drove a police car blind into the “crowd”. It requires the greatest possible education, the most careful work-up. Complexity does not justify despondency.

17th January 2019

The court wants to end the Love Parade process – the bereaved are stunned

The process is expected to be discontinued. There is too little time to the statute of limitations to determine the individual debt of the ten defendants. For the bereaved, that’s a big blow.

Stephanie Lahrtz, Munich

The criminal trial for the Duisburg Love Parade disaster will appear to be set in the coming weeks. The presiding judge explained this after a non-public legal hearing with the prosecution, defense lawyers and by-lawsuits on Thursday. The court does not see a chance to clearly determine the individual guilt of the ten defendants until the statute of limitations in July 2020.

Compensation process could follow

However, the trial has significantly contributed to clarifying the events at the event, the court said Thursday. In addition to planning errors, a collective failure of a large number of people was jointly responsible for the accident on the day of the event.

Thus, it will be for the disaster, in which on July 24, 2010 in a congestion and a mass panic 21 people were crushed to death or trampled and over 650 were sometimes seriously injured, no guilty found by the court. Accused are six employees of the Duisburg Building Office and four of the event company Lopavent. They are accused of negligent assault and negligent homicide for lack of planning or unlawful approval.

Prosecutors and defense also want to agree to the attitude, but not without a fight. So they are now negotiating conditions such as cash payments for some or all defendants. According to the court, all employees of the city as well as one of the event company should not receive a condition, because one recognizes a small personal debt. The other three accused company employees, however, should receive a condition, the court sees here a middle guilt given, as these persons could intervene in the organizational process.

For many survivors and victims the attitude would be a heavy blow. “Our daughter died for the second time,” a father said at the end of the trial. Many are stunned that apparently no one can prove serious mistakes. In addition, it has been scandalous for those affected since the beginning of the process that no real decision-makers and those responsible for planning or approval have been charged.

The plaintiffs’ lawyers representing surviving dependents or injured persons now at least want to see that the recruitment decision contains enough facts about the negligence of the city, the police and the organizer in order to claim for damages in the desired civil proceedings.

Disaster could have been prevented until just before

It could also provide the more than 3800-page report on the causes of the disaster submitted by a road safety expert last December. As a result, the terrain was not suitable for the expected mass of visitors. This could have been determined several times and by various persons in advance, wrote the expert. His realization that even on the day itself until 4:31 pm there was a chance to prevent the tragic events by coordinating the flow of people is particularly bitter. Instead, there was little or no communication between the police, organizers and other security personnel, as well as wrong decisions in the face of ever more compact masses of people. At 17 o’clock the first dead were reported.

“The wrong people are sitting in the dock”

The Loveparade trial could be terminated without judgment. According to the FDP politician and lawyer of victims and bereaved Gerhart Baum, the German legal system is not sufficiently prepared for such major proceedings. In addition, those responsible were not charged.

Gerhart Baum in conversation with Tobias Armbrüster

Tobias Armbrüster: The Loveparade trial in Düsseldorf, he should actually clarify many unanswered questions in one of the biggest disasters in Germany in the past ten years. The big question here is: Who bears the responsibility for the fact that in the mass panic in the summer of 2010, a total of 21 people died, just at this Love Parade in Duisburg. But these questions may not be resolved, as this process is becoming increasingly apparent that he is being hired. At least yesterday, the presiding judge declared this after a discussion with several participants. One of the reasons for this decision is that time is running out for the participants. Too many witnesses are still to hear and in the coming year already ends several periods of limitation.

We want to discuss this in more detail. With us on the phone is now Gerhard Rudolf tree, the former Federal Interior Minister of the FDP. With his law office, he currently represents several victims and survivors in this process. Good morning, Mr. Tree.

Gerhart Rudolf Baum: Yes, we represent about 80 survivors and victims. Many people have been traumatized. 21 have been killed, but many have been injured. You are right: It has been a huge catastrophe. And you said: damn it, how can you do something there at all.

Armbrüster: Mr Baum, before we get to this, on the question that probably many people have asked yesterday when they heard that, let me ask you the question: can it be fair to stop this process now?

Baum: Serious mistakes have been made in the run-up to the trial. Please keep in mind: The procedure has only been going on for a year with 96 days of negotiations. The mistakes in advance are very difficult to eliminate. Also the loss of time is difficult to catch up. In a first phase, the district court refused to open the main proceedings. These mistakes of the ancestor can not be blamed on the present court.

Put large-scale procedures to the test

Armbrüster: Do you have to act as a legislator? If you run for example against prescription periods, in front of a wall, you can also think about it. Do you have to change the law?

Tree: Yes. You have to even think about how to deal with such large-scale proceedings. It’s also the procedure Eschede – that’s the big train accident – or the thalidomide procedure, which have also been discontinued. Now comes here in addition to a reviewer has said that the disaster would have been until 16:31 clock on the day of misfortune still averted. And if you now research more closely, what happened after that, would have heard several hundred witnesses.

This is no longer possible, says the judge, because the statute barred in the fall of next year. It is a dilemma in which the court is located and also our clients. Of course, they are disappointed because they want justice and satisfaction, but above all they want enlightenment. It must be said that we have been following this now in 96 days of negotiation: we have come a little bit closer to the truth. A little light into the darkness has come in and also the possibility to draw consequences now is opened up. Organizational errors have been made, not just criminal acts that are being investigated here, but organizational errors in the process.

Armbrüster: At the end of the Love Parade?

Tree: Yes.

“Ridiculous 2,000 euros” as compensation

Armbrüster: You have spoken now that mistakes have been made in the run-up to this process. The big issue, why this process has even started so late. Is it possible to hold someone accountable?

Tree: No. That was an independent court. That said, that’s not enough for us. Then there were new reports. There were endless reports. The police have meticulously determined for years. I would not do a reproach now. It is an independent judiciary. But nevertheless the thing is completely unsatisfactory on the whole.

The question now arises, what comes next step, if the court adjourns because of low debt incidentally against the defendants? In which situation do the victims actually stay behind? Is this situation a hindrance in the enforcement of civil claims, compensation claims? That has to be checked now. It has been paid compensation. The country has engaged, in other ways. Political consequences have been drawn in terms of event law. But the question remains, how does it work?

For example, we have a mother who has lost her daughter. She got a ridiculous 2,000 euros in compensation and another 500 for the mortal fear of the daughter who was killed. That’s not how it works, of course, and we expect that compensation will soon be brought to justice.

Armbrüster: How do you want to achieve that?

Tree: There are several options. If the court announces its final decision in three weeks, we will have to discuss these options and discuss them with the country. But for the moment we have to deal with this unsatisfactory situation first.

Armbruster: Forgive me, Mr. Baum, if I’m not quite so knowledgeable. But I can imagine that it will be very difficult when a procedure is stopped, if therefore one of the defendants is not found guilty, then still civil compensation from him to get compensation or compensation.

Tree: No, no! Basically, it was always rightly said that the wrong people are sitting in the dock. It sat those who have prepared in detail on the dock. But responsible is the organizer, in a sense, the police and planners in the city of Duisburg, and they are also assured. We turn to the insurance companies. The number I have just mentioned is an insurance benefit from a German insurance company.

Make mistakes even justice

Armbrüster: That is, claims are made against people who are not involved in the process right now?

Tree: Yes! – Yes, that’s the case. On the basis of the findings to date, and we are dealing here with the criminal law, whether someone has made criminally responsible. The other mistakes that still exist and which still have to be analyzed in detail, which remain, and which must also be brought to justice.

Armbrüster: But that means, if I understood you correctly, you agree that this procedure is now being phased out so slowly?

Baum: What else is left for us? To our great regret, what else is left for us? I see the court is in a dilemma and we are part of this dilemma. If the court comes to this conclusion now, our hands are tied, unless the lawyers of the defendants resist. Then there is a new situation. You have to wait.

Armbrüster: What do the survivors or the victims you represent now? Do you know that the phones have been glowing in the law firm for a few days now? I can imagine that many are not so happy with that?

Tree: Yes, yes. This is very, very difficult to explain to them. You are disappointed. There are foreigners here. We have foreign clients, parents who have lost their children, who point out that different rules apply in other European countries. We have to look at it closely and then possibly draw legal-political consequences. Our legal system is apparently not sufficiently prepared for such cases.

Statements by our interlocutors reflect their own views. Deutschlandfunk does not embrace the statements of its interlocutors in interviews and discussions.

Outraged relatives in the Loveparade trial

The Loveparade trial could soon be terminated without judgment. Many questions are still open: Are there any conditions against one or more defendants? The court explained his proposal. Relatives are appalled.

Dusseldorf (AP) – Nadia Zanacchi is outraged. “The process is therefore closed without result, as one had feared from the outset.” The Italian is the mother of 21-year-old Giulia, who died in 2010 at the Love Parade disaster in Duisburg.

Previously, the chairman Judge Mario Plein had justified why the Duisburg district court after more than 90 negotiation days proposes a termination of the proceedings: There is still a sufficient probability that the ten defendants are jointly responsible for the accident. The individual guilt of each defendant was, however, considered to be low or at best moderate. This also applies in consideration of the exceptionally serious consequences of the alleged acts.

Plein cited several reasons for proposing hiring, with or without cash requirements: in 2010, there were no clear legal requirements for planning such a major event. “In this uncertain legal situation, the defendants have made intensive efforts to make the event secure from their point of view.”

The prosecution accuses the six employees of the city of Duisburg and the four employees of the organizer Lopavent above all serious planning errors. A court expert had determined that the accident could have been prevented already in the planning phase: The area was unsuitable for the visitor masses. But even on the day itself there would have been opportunities for all institutions involved to prevent the tragic events, wrote the expert.

Here the court sees another reason for his suggestion: In addition to the planning errors, a collective failure of a large number of persons was jointly responsible for the accident on the day of the event. As an example, Plein called the establishment of a police chain on the access ramp, uncoordinated openings of the separation systems and decisions on the day of the event contrary to previous arrangements. “There are many guilty parties,” the judge said elsewhere on this 97th day of the trial in Dusseldorf.

Nadia Zanacchi, on the other hand, speaks of the guilt of irresponsibility, the guilt of having chosen an absolutely unsuitable site, of the “truly incredible guilt” of not having set up adequate escape routes. Their sentences echo through the congress hall on Thursday like hammer blows.

According to the court, it should also be taken into account that the defendants were under pressure for criminal proceedings for eight and a half years, that the main hearing had already lasted so long and that the defendants had not been charged with any criminal charges.

The prosecution and the defendants are now expected to comment on the proposal by 5 February. On Wednesday, the prosecution had described it as “hardly conceivable” to agree to a setting without conditions. Defenders had demanded this.

At the Loveparade on July 24, 2010 in Duisburg, there was so much crowding at the only entrance and exit to the event grounds that 21 people were crushed and at least 652 were injured.

Many responsible persons, no guilty party

The process of deadly mass panic on the Loveparade will probably end without judgment. How can that be? Answers to the most important questions.

By Christian Wernicke, Dusseldorf

For almost two hours, Mario Plein reads from the sheet. It is brittle lawyer German, which the presiding judge in the Loveparade process on Thursday afternoon in the Messe Düsseldorf recites, where the process of the district court Duisburg takes place due to lack of space. However, the result is clear: most likely no one will ever be convicted for the death of the 21 people who were crushed on 24 July 2010 in the crush of the Love Parade.

What exactly does the court suggest?

Judge Plein wants to stop the proceedings. Without condemnation, without acquittal. After a non-public “legal discussion” with all prosecutors, defense lawyers and victims lawyers, the court has sorted the ten accused into two groups: In the case of seven defendants (six employees of the city of Duisburg and the so-called creative director of the organizer Lopavent), the criminal proceedings be terminated because of low debt. These seven unite that they had approved and organized the deadly mass party – but on the day of the event, the court said they had no chance to avert the catastrophe.

For the other three defendants, a “middle guilt” attitude is emerging. The three Lopavent employees, according to Judge Plein, were “operational” during the event on the day of the tragedy, so they could have saved something, such as better use of the folders. For these three Lopavent employees, the defense lawyers and prosecutors are now to negotiate whether and to what extent they make a monetary payment. This is expressly not a penance – but just a (small) sign. The court demands a compromise by 5 February.

How does the court justify its decision?

The court interprets the deadly crush on the ramp of the event site as a “multicausal event”. Simply put, there are so many co-responsible people that no one is guilty as an individual. The prosecutor’s charge of 2014 had interpreted the Love Parade as a quasi-planned disaster: Lopavent had miserably organized the event, the city should never have approved the planning. The second expert in the procedure, the Wuppertal traffic planner Jürgen Gerlach, also complained that the event area had been too small and that for the controls in front of the two tunnel entrances too few staff had been assigned and also incorrectly positioned. But his (still provisional) report identifies multiple failures: Thus, police officers and folders could communicate in phases neither by radio nor on mobile phones, and there were no speakers to direct the masses in the danger zone. Gerlach believes that the catastrophe could have been prevented by 16:31. First dead were reported around 17 clock.

In addition, so judges Plein, was “guilt-reducing” that in NRW 2010 there were no clear legal rules for major events. And one must acknowledge that the defendants have been “under the pressure of criminal proceedings” for “eight and a half years”.

Does the court see other culprits who are not in the dock?

Judge Plein criticized above all the action of the police. Only by “this duty-contrary, culpable behavior of third” the disaster became possible. Specifically, Plein called a police chain, the hour before the outbreak of mass panic locked the staircase from the tunnel to the event site. That contributed to the fact that next to it the “heap of humans” formed. On top of that, in the worst of crowds, a police car rolled into the death zone and increased the pressure.

What do the relatives and victims say?

Many survivors did not want to say anything on Thursday and first consult with their lawyers. Also Gabi Müller, whose son Christian, then 25, died in Duisburg, wants to “let everything sink first”. Whether individual accused deceive little or middle guilt, they could not judge anyway. But she knew: “No one is without guilt.” It would be necessary to change the laws in such a way that those responsible for major catastrophes would not escape without punishment. Spaniard Paco Zapater, father of Clara, 22, who was studying in Germany at the time, said Germany must reform its judicial system. Other countries, such as Spain or Italy, are in a position to judge those responsible “fairly, quickly and appropriately”.

How does it go from here?

At the end of January, the process will continue, as if nothing had happened: A police officer will be heard as a witness on two days. However, after 5 February, prosecutors and defense lawyers may seek out cash payments for “middle guilt” of three defendants

How does it go from here?

At the end of January, the process will continue, as if nothing had happened: A police officer will be heard as a witness on two days. However, after 5 February, if prosecutors and defense lawyers have pitted the cash payments for “middle guilt” of three defendants, the criminal proceedings may end abruptly. A problem: The important report, which works up the “multicausal happening” on 3859 pages, will probably never be formally introduced into the process. Bitter irony of the story: Judge Plein on Thursday permanently referred to the mega document.

16th January 2019

Only losers

From the beginning it was uncertain that a guilty verdict would be given at the end of the proceedings. The court has tried, but it has recognized its limitations and drawn the consequences. That was right, even if there are only losers now, comments Christian Gottschalk.

Stuttgart – The district court in Duisburg had to be carried for hunting. It was only on orders from above that the Loveparade trial began, the court itself would have preferred to keep the matter. If now – after more than a year’s negotiation – the attitude in the room, it sounds like a return coach. A court can not be forced to bargain to negotiate. But it is not like that. From the beginning it was uncertain that a guilty verdict would be given at the end of the proceedings. The court has tried, but it has recognized its limitations and drawn the consequences. That was right, even if there are only losers now.

Victims, defendants and justice lose

Losers are the victims and their relatives, in which wounds were torn open again. Losers are the defendants whose lives have been thrown out of joint when they have to sit in the courtroom three times a week. The loser is also the judiciary, which has to admit that the criminal law is only very limited for assigning a chain of failures and misfortune casually to certain people. But there is no alternative that would have been better. Against his conviction, the court may not judge anyone. And to refrain from a refurbishment from the outset, would be equally flawed. Let’s hope that the criminal curfew is now also a final stroke, and not re-examined legally. Especially since numerous civil cases are still being negotiated.

Loveparade process – termination of the procedure under money conditions? WDR aktuell

| 16.01.2019 | 02:49 min. | Available until 16.01.2020 | WDR | By Andreas Hodapp

After nearly 100 days of negotiations, an end to the process is now being discussed. The reason for this is that a judgment before the expiration of the limitation period in July 2020 becomes less and less likely. According to a lawyer, the co-plaintiffs could come to terms with the termination of the process under certain conditions. The defendants, however, reject the money. The core of the process is the mass panic at the Duisburg Love Parade in the summer of 2010, in which 21 people died.

Loveparade trial could end without judgment

The Loveparade trial could end without judgment. The court has proposed to close the case against the ten defendants. For seven people because of low debt – the other three would have to meet requirements. The defendants are employees of the city who planned the event – as well as employees of the organizer Lopavent. Whether the process is actually discontinued, defense and prosecution must decide for each one.

4th January 2019

Day 96: And now?

By Martin Teigeler on January 4, 2019

The survey of the so-called float manager of the Loveparade 2010 continues. The witness is to paint on paper, as the routes of the floats – so the techno moving van – at the parades in Berlin, Essen and Dortmund looked. He is also asked about many people and their responsibilities at the Loveparade in Duisburg.

The questions are now becoming more and more detailed, the answers of the witness always monosyllabic. “I have no concrete memory about that,” he often says. Then he may go.

(How) is it going on?

On January 16, there will be an important or perhaps crucial date in the criminal proceedings: the legal discussion. The court, defense lawyers, private prosecution attorneys and public prosecutors then deliberate in camera if and how the trial continues. There are many rumors hovering around: setting the process, part-setting – many things seem possible. The fact is that more witnesses have been summoned until April 2019.

How difficult it would be to achieve an understanding of all parties involved in the legal process is already evident in the discussions on the formalities.

The presiding judge Mario Plein suggests that the spokesman of the regional court of Duisburg should be present at the legal discussion. Plein wants him with him, so that the court after the interview to the media can provide information – especially since the contents of the legal discussion should penetrate anyway. But individual defense lawyers and suffrage lawyers are against Plein’s proposal. Only the judge himself was allowed to inform the public about the legal discussion in the meeting on January 17 (beginning at 1 pm), their opinion. So the speaker has to stay outside.

Controversy money

The mood of the judge does not get better with the next topic. It’s about the money. As a legal assistant paid plaintiff attorneys anxious for their fee, since the legal discussion on January 16, yes, is not an official hearing date. The lawyers announce that they will stay away from the legal discussion if they do not receive a lawyer’s fee.

Judge Plein expresses his displeasure: “They expect me to worry about whether they will be remunerated or sowat.” A “rather ugly topic” is that. After lengthy discussion, he admits that the court is trying to find a solution.

Somewhat sarcastic Plein says in the end, now everyone is in the mood for the legal discussion: “That can only be very fruitful.”

3rd January 2019

Day 95: The Float Manager

By Martin Teigeler on 3 January 2019

These are spooky pictures that will be remembered by the Loveparade 2010: Techno-floats, so-called floats, are still driving over the party grounds long after the catastrophe. Loud music, people celebrate – although there were just a few meters away on the ramp to the event area dead and injured. At that time, the police had requested that they not break off the party to prevent further escalation on the departure of techno fans.
In the criminal proceedings, today’s Float Manager says that he drove the cars from a radio control center in a nearby skyscraper. It was not until 6 pm, about an hour late, that he was informed about the catastrophe on the day of the disaster, reports the 59-year-old witness.
The master of event technology has been active in the industry since 1985. On behalf of the organizer Lopavent he had already worked at previous Loveparades. The presiding judge Mario Plein poses as usual many detailed questions – whereby the witness can not remember much at many things.
“Out of control”

At preliminary discussions one spoke about the “topic of the human concentration at the Rampenkopf”, says the witness. The organizer had assured him that the police and the police would ensure that the arriving people would quickly pass through tunnels and ramps to the higher-lying party grounds. He himself was “in no way” responsible for the security concept, but only for the “floats,” the witness stresses. But he had also proposed additional barriers – to no avail.
E-mails are read in the courtroom, according to which one of today’s defendants from the ranks of the organizer Lopavent should have written to the witness that it would be better not to tell the authorities about the possibility of loudspeaker announcements about all techno cars – because that could arouse desires. According to witnesses of police officers, such emergency announcements should have been rejected on the day of the disaster because that would not work.
On the afternoon of July 24, 2010, it had become so close to the entrance of the site that the techno cars changed their route and were finally stopped. The witness reports how he saw with binoculars and surveillance cameras how “a compact crowd” formed. People climbed masts. “From that point on, it was clear to me that we were no longer in normal operation, that something was out of control.”
The questioning of the witness will be continued tomorrow.

Loveparade process: The “float” responsible says from WDR currently

| 03.01.2019 | 01:27 Min. | Available until 03.01.2020 |

WDR Day 95 at the Loveparade Process. On Thursday (03.01.2018) to say the man who was responsible in 2010 for the floats, so the music trucks.

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