Home Diplomacy | Conflict | Accident Berlin court sees trial of arson attack on Russian news agency

Berlin court sees trial of arson attack on Russian news agency


A man accused of attempting to set a Russian news agency in Berlin on fire faces trial before a Berlin regional court.

The charges against the Russian national, who has been living in Germany for around 30 years, include attempted murder and attempted aggravated arson.

At the beginning of the trial on Friday, his defence lawyers said that their client would initially remain silent.

During the preliminary proceedings, the accused is said to have denied the accusations and to have spoken of an intrigue against him.

The man allegedly built an unconventional explosive and incendiary device (IED) in the spring of last year and placed it in the basement shaft of an apartment building occupied by employees of the Russian news agency Ria Novosti.

He had known that the house was “inhabited by several people, including a 4-year-old girl,” according to the indictment of the Berlin Prosecutor General’s Office.

The authority assumes attempted murder with “homicidal means.”

However, the incendiary device did not ignite for unknown reasons. The device was only discovered days later and defused by specialists of the Berlin State Criminal Police Office.

According to the Prosecutor General’s Office, the man claimed after his arrest to have been the victim of an intrigue by Russian intelligence services.

Extensive investigations, however, had “not produced any indications of this,” the authority said at the time of the indictment.

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