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New criminal trial begins for Love Parade 10

Employees of promoter Lopavent and the city of Duisburg will once again take to the dock for one of the biggest criminal trials in German history

By IQ on 08 Dec 2017

A panoramic view of the 'over-capacity' Love Parade 2010 site

A panoramic view of the 'over-capacity' Love Parade 2010 site


image © Arne Müseler/arne-mueseler.de/CC-BY-SA-3.0

Following outcry over the failure of a previous lawsuit, ten of the organisers of the tragic 2010 Love Parade festival today once again went on trial in Germany.

The ten defendants – four employees of the festival’s promoter, Lopavent, and six of the city of Duisburg, in North Rhine-Westphalia – were cleared of any wrongdoing in an April 2016 decision by Duisburg state court, which found there was “no sufficient case to answer” – a ruling described as a “judicial scandal” by relatives of the deceased.

However, an appeals court overturned the decision in April of this year, with prosecutors saying they are confident of convictions the second time around.

Twenty-one people died, and more than 650 were injured, on 24 July 2010 in a crush in a tunnel that served as the sole entrance to the techno festival. Over a million people are said to have attended the 2010 event, which was held at a former goods yard with a capacity of around 250,000.

Love Parade’s founder, DJ Dr Motte, says he hopes the trial will “shed full light” on the tragedy

The victims included festivalgoers from Spain, Australia, Italy, Bosnia-Herzegovina, China and the Netherlands.

According to Agence France-Presse, defendants face charges of negligent manslaughter and bodily harm in one of the biggest criminal cases in Germany’s history, with the accused being represented by 32 lawyers and survivors by nearly 40.

The scale of the trial and the huge public interest have forced court officials to move the proceedings from the Duisburg state court to a 500-seat convention hall in nearby Dusseldorf, reports AFP.

Love Parade’s founder, DJ Dr Motte, says he hopes the trial will “shed full light” on how the tragedy was allowed by happen. “That’s what the parents want, and that’s what matters most,” he tells the DPA news agency.

 


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