German court reinstates murder verdict for race drivers

March 26, 2019
FILE - In this Feb. 1, 2016 file photo destroyed cars are seen after a crash during an illegal car race in Berlin. A German court has reinstated the murder conviction of two men whose midnight drag race in downtown Berlin ended in the death of another driver. Hamdi H. and Marvin N. in 2016, then 26 and 24, raced at 170 kph (106 mph) on Berlin’s Kurfuerstendamm boulevard until Hamid H. ran into a Jeep, killing the 69-year-old driver. (Britta Pedersen/dpa via AP)

BERLIN (AP) — A German court has upheld the murder convictions of two men whose midnight drag race in downtown Berlin ended with a crash that killed another driver.

Investigators said the two reached speeds of 170 kph (106 mph) during their 2016 race on Berlin’s Kurfuerstendamm boulevard. One of the men racing struck an uninvolved Jeep and the 69-year-old driver died.

The pair were sentenced to life in prison in 2017 after receiving Germany’s first murder convictions for a drag-racing fatality.

The verdict was overturned on appeal last year. A federal court ruled the crime didn’t meet the legal requirements for murder and ordered a retrial.

But the Berlin State Court reinstated the earlier verdict Tuesday, saying the racers’ actions had gone beyond negligence and they knew the race could result in death.

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