He suddenly attacked passengers on a regional train in Schleswig-Holstein with a kitchen knife, leaving two people dead. Ibrahim A. has now been sentenced to life imprisonment.

In the trial surrounding the fatal knife attack in Brokstedt, Schleswig-Holstein, the Itzehoe regional court sentenced the defendant Ibrahim A. to life imprisonment for murder and attempted murder. The chamber considered it proven that the 34-year-old stabbed two people and seriously injured four on a regional train in January 2023. In addition, the Grand Criminal Chamber determined the seriousness of the guilt on Wednesday, which means that a suspension of the sentence after 15 years is practically impossible. The verdict is not yet legally binding.

On the afternoon of January 25, 2023, Ibrahim A. pulled out a kitchen knife on the regional train traveling from Kiel to Hamburg and suddenly attacked passengers with it. A 17-year-old and her 19-year-old boyfriend died. Four other passengers were seriously injured. The perpetrator was eventually overpowered by passengers. The act caused horror far beyond Schleswig-Holstein.

On the question of culpability, the Grand Criminal Chamber followed the report of psychiatrist Arno Deister. The professor had diagnosed the defendant with psychotic symptoms and post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD), but not psychosis. “I don’t see any impairment of the ability to understand,” he said. There is also no abolition of the ability to control.

With its verdict, the court followed prosecutor Janina Seyfert’s demand for punishment. Defense attorney Björn Seelbach, on the other hand, argued for his client to be placed in forensic psychiatry. In the event that the criminal chamber did not see any limited culpability or incapacity, he had demanded a sentence of ten years for manslaughter and serious or dangerous bodily harm.

Until a few days before the attack, Ibrahim A. had been in custody in Hamburg for another crime. The man who came to Germany from the Gaza Strip had a tolerated stay and had gone to Kiel for an appointment with the immigration authorities. According to the prosecution, he acted out of frustration.