A German federal court said Tuesday it had thrown out a rejected Iraqi asylum-seeker’s appeal against his conviction for raping and murdering a 14-year-old local Jewish girl.
Ali Bashar was sentenced to life in prison by the Wiesbaden state court in July following a four-month trial in a case that fueled tensions over migration.
The judge, Juergen Bonk, also found the crime to be of exceptional severity, meaning that Bashar will not be granted parole after 15 years as is usually the case in Germany.
Bashar committed a "cold-blooded murder" and showed "neither remorse nor," said the presiding judge, adding that during his trial the defendant had "voiced no sincere word of regret".
Bashar, who was 21 at the time of the killing, was convicted of assaulting and murdering Susanna Feldman in Wiesbaden in May 2018.
The Iraqi man battered, raped and strangled the schoolgirl to death in a wooded area near railway tracks on May 23.
The court heard he then sent false messages from Susanna's smartphone indicating she had left for an impromptu trip to Paris. Her body was only found on June 6 in a shallow grave covered with leaves, twigs and soil.
Bashar and his family abruptly left a home for asylum applicants in Germany after the killing, and he was later arrested by Kurdish forces in Iraq, handed over to German police officers and flown back to Germany.
Bashar is believed to have arrived in Germany in October 2015.
The Federal Court of Justice said it threw out Bashar’s appeal in an April 28 ruling. Among other objections to his conviction, he had argued that his return from Iraq constituted a “procedural impediment.”
The Alternative for Germany (AfD) party and other far-right groups have seized on the brutal killing of 14-year-old Susanna Maria Feldman in their campaign against Chancellor Angela Merkel's asylum policy.