A man jailed for life for the kidnap and murder of a young German boy has seen his accusations of torture threats by the police rejected in court.
The European Court of Human Rights said Magnus Gaefgen’s right to a fair trial was not violated when German police threatened him with torture as they searched for the boy.
The court made its decision because evidence produced by the threats was not used in Gaefgen’s trial. The officers concerned have already been warned and given a suspended fine.
Eleven-year old Jakob von Metzler was the son of a wealthy German banker. He was kidnapped on his way home from school in Frankfurt in 2002. He was murdered before Gaefgen demanded a million euro ransom from his family.
Police had already linked Gaefgen with the kidnap, and he was arrested after collecting the money.
Investigators had thought Jakob was still alive, and a senior officer authorised the threat of violence to persuade Gaefgen to talk.