(FINLAND) Court Report: A Danish man accused of the brutal murder of a young German backpacker on a ferry more than three decades ago has been cleared by a Finnish court #AceNewsDesk report

FINLAND: Viking Sally: Suspect accused of 1987 Finland ferry murder is acquitted after the 52-year-old was accused of killing Klaus Schelkle, 20, and attempting to murder his girlfriend Bettina Taxis on the cruise ship travelling from Sweden to Finland in July 1987 and this case remains one of the longest unsolved murders in Finnish history according to BBC News

Reuters: The Danish man, pictured here in the blue suit, was identified in court as Herman H ……..He was acquitted by judges in the city of Turku on Wednesday.

Last year, police arrested the Danish suspect, who at the time of the attack was an 18-year-old scout and a passenger on the Viking Sally, after new information came to light. 

At the beginning of the trial in May, prosecutors alleged that the man – identified in court only as Herman H – had earlier confessed to attacking the two German students. They said he should be sentenced to life in prison.

Reuters: Finnish backpackers Klaus Schelkle, 20, and Bettina Taxis, 22, seen here at an undisclosed location in the summer of 1987

However, the suspect denied all charges, and his defence lawyers said that any such comments did not prove his guilt.

The judges dismissed the prosecution’s case, stating that the alleged confession did not mean that the defendant’s guilt could be “considered proven or even probable”.

They ruled that earlier police interviews with the suspect were also inadmissible as evidence.

A further setback for the prosecution was the refusal of a key witness – the defendant’s former wife – to give evidence at the trial. 

The judges said that the prosecution had failed to prove that the defendant had the motive and was the only person on board the ship who had the opportunity to commit the crime.

The court ordered the Finnish state to pay the defendant €3,000 (£2,575) in compensation.

In the 1987 attack, Mr Schelkle was bludgeoned to death and his girlfriend was severely injured as the couple slept on the outer deck of the ship. 

Prosecutors said a hammer-like weapon was used and thrown overboard. The weapon was never found.

Years later the Viking Sally changed ownership and was renamed MS Estonia. It sank in the Baltic Sea off Finland while crossing from Tallinn to Stockholm in September 1994, with the loss of 852 lives.

There were 137 survivors. It was one of Europe’s worst peacetime shipping disasters.

BBC/Reuters/Finnish Media/

#AceNewsDesk report ……Published: July.01: 2021:

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BRUSSELS: ‘ Gas Supplies for Poland and Slovakia Dip As EU Imposes Sanctions ‘

#AceNewsServices (Exclusive) – BRUSSELS – September 12 – Poland and Slovakia have said gas supplies from Russia are down, as the EU impose’s new sanctions.


A Polish diplomat told EUobserver on Thursday (11 September) that volumes fell by 20 percent on Monday and were down by 45 percent by Thursday.

The same day Slovak PM Robert Fico said supplies to his country had dipped by eight to 11 percent.

Both countries are trying to find out what is going on amid denials by Russian supplier Gazprom that its shipments are any lower than normal.

The Polish diplomat said the enquiries are being made by Polish gas distribution firms. But Fico told press he has tasked officials to contact Moscow.

Poland, Slovakia, and Hungary are involved in shipping “reverse-flow” gas to Ukraine after Russia cut off Ukraine gas in a price dispute.

But a Hungarian diplomat told this website its Russia gas deliveries are normal for now.

We did not see a drop in supplies. But we are filling up our storage tanks so that we are prepared for any scenario that may come”, the source noted.

The Polish diplomat added: “On the Polish side, there is no risk to national consumers at this stage. We have generous reserves. But the supply reductions could be a burden on reverse-flow and I have heard talk that this is being scaled down”.

Gazprom’s reductions come the same week the EU adopted a new round of economic sanctions against Russia following its invasion of east Ukraine.

Some EU states had wanted to wait and see if a ceasefire deal with Russia holds before implementing the new measures.

But EU Council chief Herman Van Rompuy announced on Thursday that they will enter into life the following morning.

Gazprom Gas supplies - 50f5940df92d861b9e51de5bd2c5f517

The most vulnerable to gas cuts is Finland and according to report by EUobserver

“A Russian gas export embargo during the winter of 2014/15 lasting for more than 6 months would cause supply shortfalls in many European countries, in particular, in central and eastern Europe, including Germany,” according to a study published Wednesday (3 September) by the Institute of Energy Economics at the University of Cologne. 


#aceworldnews, #russia, #brussels, #cologne, #eu, #finland, #gazprom, #hungary, #moscow, #poland, #polish, #russian, #slovakia, #ukraine