At the trial of the November 2020 terror attack in Vienna, four defendants were found guilty of murder as supporters of the perpetrator. The jury found it established Wednesday night that they helped select the target for the attack and procured firearms and ammunition.
The public prosecutor's office had also accused two other men of having contributed to the murder by preparing the assassination. However, the jury in the Vienna district court acquitted her of this main charge due to a lack of evidence. Before the verdict on Wednesday, the suspected helpers of the Islamist assassin distanced themselves from him and protested their innocence.
"For me it was a heinous act that cannot be justified in any way," said a defendant who drove the later perpetrator to the Slovakian capital of Bratislava, where he tried unsuccessfully to buy ammunition. He didn't realize what the perpetrator was planning. "I distance myself from any terrorist group," he said.
Another defendant admitted that he was involved in brokering firearms. "I deeply regret it," he said. "But you can be sure that I have never been involved in terrorist matters," he told the jury before they retired to deliberate.
The guilty verdicts are not yet final. The verdict on the extent of the penalties was expected later in the evening.
The 20-year-old perpetrator was a sympathizer of the Islamic State (IS) terrorist militia. He killed four people in Vienna city center on November 2, 2020 before being shot dead by police. One of the fatalities was a German student. 23 passers-by were injured, some seriously, including some Germans.