Monday 5 December 2016

Cologne sex attacks: Only three out of 58 men arrested for New Year's Eve assaults are refugees

Majority of suspects are of Algerian, Tunisian or Moroccan descent and none had recently arrived in Germany, police say

Published 15/02/2016 | 07:38

Police officers patrol in front of the main station of Cologne, Germany, on Wednesday, Jan. 6, 2016. More women have come forward alleging they were sexually assaulted and robbed during New Years celebrations in the German city of Cologne, as police faced mounting criticism for their handling of the incident
Police officers patrol in front of the main station of Cologne, Germany, on Wednesday, Jan. 6, 2016. More women have come forward alleging they were sexually assaulted and robbed during New Years celebrations in the German city of Cologne, as police faced mounting criticism for their handling of the incident
A woman holds up a sign saying 'No Violence Against Women' as protesters gather in front of Hauptbahnhof main railway station to protest against the New Year's Eve sex attacks on January 9, 2016 in Cologne, Germany. (Photo by Sascha Schuermann/Getty Images)

Just three of the 58 suspects arrested in connection with the mass sex attack on women in Cologne on New Year’s Eve were refugees, it has been reported.

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Refugees were blamed for more than 1,000 reports of theft, sex assault and rape of women at Cologne’s central train station - leading to a hardening of attitudes towards Chancellor Angela Merkel’s open door policy on refugees.

But of those arrested only three - two Syrians and an Iraqi - had recently arrived in Germany.

Read More: Sexual harassment complaints double at Cologne Carnival

A woman holds up a sign saying 'No Violence Against Women' as protesters gather in front of Hauptbahnhof main railway station to protest against the New Year's Eve sex attacks on January 9, 2016 in Cologne, Germany. (Photo by Sascha Schuermann/Getty Images)
A woman holds up a sign saying 'No Violence Against Women' as protesters gather in front of Hauptbahnhof main railway station to protest against the New Year's Eve sex attacks on January 9, 2016 in Cologne, Germany. (Photo by Sascha Schuermann/Getty Images)

The majority of the suspects were of Algerian, Tunisian or Moroccan origin and three were German citizens, according to Cologne public prosecutor Ulrich Bremer.

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Speaking to German newspaper Die Welt, he also said that of 1,054 complaints received 600 were connected to theft rather than a sexual offence.

Read More: First man arrested after New Year's Eve Cologne sex attacks as police deny girl (13) was raped by migrants

Despite this Cologne’s newly installed  police chief Jurgen Mathies said the technique of hemming women in and cutting them off from their friends did appear to have come from countries where “they might be familiar with this behaviour”.

He said he had never seen it in Germany before.

Independent News Service

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