German Nurse Admits To Killing More Than 100 Patients

The defendant says that he intentionally gave cardiac arrests to victims because he enjoyed the feeling of bringing them back.

Syringe pulling medicine from a vial.
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The defendant says that he intentionally gave cardiac arrests to victims because he enjoyed the feeling of bringing them back.

Niels Hoegel, a former nurse in Germany, admits that he killed more than 100 patients at the hospitals where he had worked, according to the New York Post. Already serving a life sentence as the result of a trial in 2015, Hoegel is currently facing a new trial for his part in the deaths of the 100 patients in Delmenhorst and Oldenburg hospitals — where he worked between 1999 and 2005.

When Judge Sebastian Buehrmann outlined the charges against Hoegel and asked if they were correct, Hoegel is quoted as saying “Yes,” adding, “What I have admitted took place,” per Fox News.

At the beginning of the proceedings, the judge asked the court to stand for a minute of silence for the victims. “All of their relatives deserve that their memory be honored,” whether Hoegel had a hand in their passing or not. “We will make every effort to seek the truth.”

The courts first gained knowledge of the deaths in Hoegel’s 2015 trial, where he was convicted of two murders and two attempted murders. At that time, he stated that he had intentionally caused cardiac crises in more than 90 patients at Delmenhorst — so that he would have the opportunity to attempt to resuscitate them. He said that he enjoyed the feeling of being able to bring them back from the beyond, but prosecutors argued that he was simply trying to impress his coworkers, according to Fox News. He later told authorities that he had done similar things to patients at Oldenburg, the location of the current trial.

Germany does not allow consecutive sentences, so another 100 murder convictions would not be likely to make his life sentence worse than it already is. However, in the German legal system, people serving life sentences are generally eligible for parole after 15 years served. According to Christian Marbach, representing the relatives of the deceased, the additional convictions could make it more difficult for Hoegel to get parole.

“We have fought for four years for this trial and expect Hoegel to be convicted of another 100 killings. The aim is for Hoegel to stay in custody as long as possible.”

Due to high public interest and the large number of victims involved in the trial, it is being held in a conference center large enough to accommodate the number of co-plaintiffs and press crews. With such a large number of people involved, the unusual trial is scheduled to run through May of 2019.

Authorities are also investigating criminal charges for other staff members at the two hospitals where the murders took place.