A 22-year-old Iraqi man who fled to Germany was sentenced to life in prison Wednesday for raping and killing a 14-year-old Jewish girl.
Ali Bashar met Susanna Feldmann last year in the woods near Wiesbaden, Germany, and the two had an argument. Authorities said Bashar was intoxicated at the time he raped and beat her to death.
Bashar argued the sex was consensual and that he attacked her when she threatened to call police. He took her phone and later sent messages to the victim’s mother saying she had fled the country. Bashar returned to Iraq with his family when they were denied asylum in Germany, but was ultimately extradited for trial.
Bashar won’t be eligible for parole for 15 years. He also faces charges in a separate sexual assault case involving an 11-year-old girl.
The case has sparked debate in Germany about Chancellor Angela Merkel’s open-door immigration policies, considering the perpetrator had been denied asylum but was still living in the country.
Police said there was no evidence to suggest this was a hate crime.