The tearful mum of a 14-year-old schoolgirl allegedly raped and murdered by a failed asylum seeker has given a touching testimony in court about her “happy” daughter’s last weeks.
Susanna Maria Feldman, 14, was found raped and murdered next to a railway line in May last year in the city of Wiesbaden in the central German state of Hesse.
The victim’s asylum seeker boyfriend Ali Bashar, 22, was a listed as a suspect and was later arrested after he returned to his native Iraq and extradited to Germany.
Bashar is currently on trial for the rape and murder of Feldman in a highly-watched trial with far-reaching political implications.
According to local media, the case has already forced Chancellor Angela Merkel to speed up deportations of failed criminal asylum seekers like Bashar.
The suspect had his asylum application rejected and was previously arrested for fighting and armed robbery, according to reports.
During the high-profile case, Susanna’s mother Diana Feldmann, 45, took to the witness stand to talk about her daughter.
Diana told the court that Susanna hit puberty early and had fallen in love with Ali Bashar’s younger brother.
She said: “At home she was a small child, outside she wanted to look grown-up, started to wear makeup and dress differently.
“We talked about everything. I knew she had a crush on Ali’s younger brother.”
Mum Diana said that her daughter was “happy and cheerful” after meeting the Bashar brothers’ circle of friends as she did not have many at school.
She told the court that one day before the victim’s disappearance, she got a call from her.
Diana said: “At about 9:40pm, she called me and asked if she could stay with a [female] friend. Actually, she wanted to come home by bus. I said yes. I thought it would be better than walking around alone at night.”
According to the indictment, the victim actually went to meet a group of migrants outside a local asylum centre.
Ali Bashar led her away to a quiet area where he allegedly raped her.
Previously, Iraqi police general Tarik Ahmad said that while they were interrogating Bashar, he admitted to strangling her with a tree branch when she threatened to call the police about the rape.
In tears, Diana said that allowing Susanna to stay with a friend was “a mistake that I cannot forgive myself for to this day”, at which point the court testimony had to be interrupted to give the distraught mother time to recover.
Diana said she is currently undergoing psychological treatment and visits her daughter’s grave most days, something which she said gives her the strength needed for the court case.
She refused the defendant’s apology, who reportedly confessed to having strangled the victim but denied raping her.
Diana said: “It did not come from his heart, but out of a recommendation from his lawyers.”
Ali Bashar is also suspected of having twice raped an 11-year-old girl in his asylum centre room, according to local media.
The trial is continuing.