Bubi gang in court – “They wanted to build a reputation as serious criminals”

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Organized as the mafia, nine young people are said to have terrorized a mobile phone shop in Vienna-Meidling. They tried to set him on fire with Molotov cocktails, and a blackmail letter should then yield thousands of euros in protection money. The Bubi gang is now in the lay court in Vienna. While the defense describes her as “not extremely dangerous”, the youth justice service speaks of “advanced radicalization”.

They celebrate newspaper articles about their actions on videos, proudly posing for photos with firearms and machetes. A group photo shows the gang in front of a mosque in Vienna-Meidling. All this is shown on a large screen to the lay judges of the Vienna Regional Court, as the prosecutor makes his detailed case about the Bubi gang.

Arson in a mobile phone shop in Vienna
The young suspects show a completely different picture at the start of the trial. The nine young people look at their hands in almost shock while it is explained in detail how they formed a gang and what position each of them held.

Especially with the top allegations about a cell phone store in the 12th District. The gang demanded protection money from the operator, otherwise they would carry out violent attacks – three times in the form of Molotov cocktails and pyrotechnics, and once they committed a robbery. To protect themselves, they demanded 25,000 euros from the Indian in a blackmail letter.

“They were out to build a reputation as serious criminals who would be respected. “They saw violence as something very positive,” the prosecutor explains. “There are two main perpetrators. For them it was a kind of goal in life to become rich.”

Chechen gang as role model
The defender of a 19-year-old gang leader provides background information on the motivation behind the criminal organization: “Their role model was the Chechen gang ‘Goldenberg’ with members in the three-digit range.” arrested in early 2015. But the suspect would never have gotten that far.

Defense lawyers don’t view gangs as ‘extremely dangerous’
And lawyer Philipp Wolm also emphasizes time and time again that his client is ultimately a 17-year-old teenager and not the second head of a mafia-like gang: “Everyone is afraid of my client, we have now heard from the public prosecutor. I’ve known him for eight months now and I’m not afraid. Ladies and gentlemen, lay judges, you don’t have to be afraid of him either. His dream is to become a nurse.”

The lawyer for the sixth defendant, Alexander Philipp, also said: ‘I have been doing this job for thirty years and I know what the mafia is and how it works. But they are all still teenagers. They are not dangerous.” Lawyer Astrid Wagner describes her 15-year-old client as a “follower”: “It gave his self-confidence a little boost at the time.”

Lawyer Florian Kreiner, who represents the second defendant and at the same time second in the gang hierarchy, considers the 16-year-old’s contribution to the crime as much less than the prosecutor describes: “They wanted to get into the media somehow.” That is why the youngster also had one of the arsons filmed. Yet the Bubi gang almost exclusively confesses to the full accusations, but does not want to say anything else about the accusations.

Suspect already “advanced radicalized”
While defense attorneys consistently talk about youthful recklessness and naivety, juvenile court reports and another criminal complaint paint a very different picture. In any case, the two main perpetrators already had ‘advanced religious radicalisation’. In the Steinbauer Park, one of them allegedly insulted men as “infidels” and then beat them up…

Several days of negotiations are planned for the trial. Witnesses and other parties involved must be heard. There is a risk of long prison sentences.

Source: Krone

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