The municipality of Landau-Land in Rhineland-Palatinate must accommodate a rejected asylum seeker who has committed a criminal offense in a homeless shelter following his release from prison.

This was the decision of the administrative court in Neustadt an der Weinstraße, according to information provided on Wednesday, thereby upholding a claim by the man from Somalia. The municipality had refused to accommodate him, citing his dangerousness.

The court, however, considered the accommodation of the man, who was classified as a repeat offender and had been noticed for robbery and assault, among other things, and was sentenced to two years in prison last year, to be reasonable. The municipality, as the responsible police authority, had to take action due to the threat of involuntary homelessness, because the plaintiff was currently not able to find any other accommodation options.

The court stated that the authorities must counteract the dangers posed by the person concerned through other measures “in the field of criminal law, police and regulatory law, care law and, if necessary, under the state law for mentally ill persons”. A rejected asylum seeker is also subject in principle to the same “control measures” that apply to a German citizen in a comparable case.

The court further explained that the man was not a violent or mentally ill person. Accommodation under the state law applicable in such cases is therefore currently out of the question. Should the municipality transfer responsibility for the man to other bodies at a later date, its obligation to accommodate the homeless would also expire.

According to the court, the Somali man has been living in Germany for more than ten years. His asylum application was rejected in 2019, after which he was threatened with deportation. He was expelled from Germany by order of 2 February. At that time, he was serving his prison sentence.