Monday, 21 May, 2018

'Thrill seeker' nurse charged with 97 hospital murders in Germany

Germany 'Thrill seeker' nurse charged with 97 hospital murders in Germany
Melinda Barton | 23 January, 2018, 11:13

He was jailed for life in 2015, but at the time it was clear he had murdered many more patients, with investigators admitting they may never know the true number as some remains had been cremated.

The nurse worked at a clinic from 1999 to 2002 in Oldenburg, and from 2003 to 2005 in Delmenhorst, both in the country's north.

The new indictment against Niels Hoegel was expected after officials said in November that he may have killed more than 100 patients in total.

The death rate at Delmenhorst hospital's intensive care unit nearly doubled while he worked in the department, according to Deutsche Welle.

During his trial, he admitted that he deliberately induced cardiac crises in patients because he liked the feeling of being able to resuscitate them.

That admission led investigators to dig into the toxicology reports at the hospitals Hoegel worked at, leading to suspicions about other deceased patients.

Separate investigations are looking at the clinics in Delmenhorst and Oldenburg and whether superiors there had cause to suspect foul play in the high number of patient deaths.

The new charges he faces include the deaths of 62 patients at the same hospital.

According to, the patient survived and in 2008 Hoegel was sentenced to seven-and-a-half years in prison for attempted murder. There are three further cases that are "suspicious", but the test didn't provide enough evidence for charges to be brought.

Any additional convictions could affect Hoegel's possibility of parole, but consecutive sentences are not a part of the German legal system.

Hoegel used a variety of drugs in his resuscitation attempts, Koziolek said.

"From the prosecutorial point of view, the accused Niels H accepted, at least tacitly, in all cases the death of the patients due to the effects of the drugs", the prosecutors said in a statement.

Police questioned Hoegel six times to get to the bottom of the latest charges which also involved the exhumation of 134 bodies from 67 different cemeteries.

Police have said if local health officials hadn't hesitated in alerting authorities, Hoegel could have been stopped earlier.