Am 11. Juli 2016 endete der Prozess um die Ermordung von Luke Holland am 20. September 2015 in der Ringbahnstraße in Berlin-Neukölln. Der verurteilte Täter wird bereits in der Akte zur Ermordung von Burak Bektaş am 5.4.2012 als Tatverdächtiger erwähnt.

Hier veröffentlichen wir das Statement von Rita und Phil Holland, den Eltern von Luke. Wir Danken ihnen, das wir es hier veröffentlichen können.

Closing Statement Phil Holland

Luke was my favourite person, not only my son.
I cry often when alone, like men do.

He was, and should still be, intelligent, funny, hard working, helpful and caring.
I did not know how caring, and loved, until over 300 people attended his funeral, the majority I did not know.

Even though Luke was away from home we were in contact every day.
Now our home, our life, our hearts are empty and silent, forever.
We only have memories and no future without him in our lives.

It is so hard to understand why. An accident yes, an illness yes, but a senseless murder, no.

Luke worked so hard to improve his life and the lives of other people.

He had finally arrived, after his high level corporate life, where he always wanted to be, helping business’s start up, and he chose to do it in Germany.

He helped 10 business’s start up in Munich, which are now thriving.
He co-founded a business in Berlin, which now employs l4 people.

Luke was a benefit to Germany and Berlin, a city he loved and informed us often, was very safe, but sadly not for our son.

Luke had so much more to give to this world, probably 50 years or more of his futue, our future also, and that has been taken away from us and Luke.

Our hearts will never heal, daily I see reminders of our son, and it is actually like a physical pain I feel in my chest.

We have been given a lifelong sentence of grief, despair and emptiness.

This is a photograph taken by us the last time we saw Luke alive, 8 weeks before he died.

Can I show this to the defendant and ask him a question?

Why did you kill our son, our only child, a person you had never seen before.
Did you not like his shirt, his hairstyle or was it because you heard him speaking English on his mobile phone?
Please tell me.

How would you feel if I murdered your 3 sons?
What sentence would you ask the court to give me?

You killed him in a cowards way and are too much of a coward to admit it.

I have been impressed with the judges questioning of all the witnesses, even the ones who would not tell the truth.

We are grateful for the translation help given to us.

I feel the defendant must be sentenced according to evidence, statements and proof, not sentenced on presumptions or personal opinions.

That evidence shows the defendant was a Xenophobe, who collected and displayed in his apartment, illegal Nazi memorabilia, weapons, firearms, ammunition and black powder, physical evidence seen in this court.

It has not been proved that the defendant was drunk or adversely affected by alcohol when he shot our son, no blood tests, no proof.

The only witness who spoke to him, soon after the shooting, stated the defendant was coherent and pacing around, not staggering or swaying and asked „where is the other one“ then calmly moving to the bar door before turning around and walking away.

Who the other one was, only the defendant will know.
Why did he not shoot this witness and her friend, the only thing that differentiated Luke from these two, who spoke German, is that he heard Luke speaking English.

The defendant went away to hide his gun, then got onto a train to a festival to create an alibi, this is not the action of drunk person, but a calculating person.

I thought the sentence for Xenophobic, treacherous or malicious murder was lifelong minimum 15 years, so I fail to understand how Mr Von Hagen can suggest a discount of over 3 years for the unproven effect of alcohol on the defendant, can be justified.

From what we have heard in this court, he expressed his hatred for foreigners, through statements he made in bar Del Rex and arguments with foreigners in that bar.

How can all this be put aside when sentencing this man.
For him to be given less than a life sentence would be a disgrace to this court and a cruel injustice to our wonderful son.

There appears to us to be a tendency to play down the Xenophobic aspects of this, please do not tum your backs on this, however uncomfortable this may be for the good people of Germany.

We feel there have been proven facts that must not be pushed aside.
Thankyou for your patience.

Phil Holland, father of Luke Holland

Closing Statement Rita Holland

I want to read out just a handful of the hundreds of tributes we received about Luke.
and there were hundreds, all with a story to tell about how much they had loved Luke and how Luke had touched their lives.

Gotz Von Ber Thomas, a friend from Munich:
Luke was one of the good guys. Always smiling, never a bad word to say about anyone.
He brightened the lives of so many and had so much more left to give. We‘ll never forget you Luke. But play some heavenly football too!

This one from GGW, A German Finance Business company I think.
We‘ve just had a minute’s silence for our colleague and friend, Luke.
One of the kindest, intellectual and sensitive men there was. Such a cruel, malicious death.
A lovely, gentle man. It was a privilege to know you Luke.

Eduardo Beltran, Mexico, From Said Business school. Oxford:
Luke, when I heard about your murder my heart grew small and I felt a terrible hole. You were such a good person with such a good heart.

Kyoko Satamoto, A friend from Japan:
Luke always cared about others. I have decided that I will make people feel how he made others feel, even though I have noticed how hard this is, and I have been becoming to feel how Luke could do everything, He is an amazing person, I miss him so.

WYRA the company Luke worked for in Munich:
Luke made our time at WYRA, Munich, so special and always supported us, when we needed help. Always friendly and smiling, just a great guy.

Tim Keech. London. one of Luke’s cousins:
Luke was so special to so many people.
Someone who had charisma and kindness to match his drive and intelligence. Luke was a beloved cousin to me.

Brian and Linda Keech, Luke’s Aunty and Uncle:
Our lovely nephew Luke. With all your great achievements, all the lives you affected, all the people you supported and encouraged, and all the hearts you touched, you were way too young to depart this world.
In truth, this world really needed you to be around for many more years.

James Mcleash, our young neighbour from Lymm Cheshire:
I always thought of you as a big brother Luke, you always looked out for me and you helped me get my 1st job at the restaurant, and then took care of me there too love you Luke, James

Matt T. Japan:
Luke and I were room-mates in Japan in 2006/7 and have remained close friends ever since. Luke made a huge, positive impact on my life.
Could you please forward funeral dates as there are many of us from around the world who want to attend.

Simon Myatt close friend since school-days:
Here is another tribute to add to the overwhelming amount of messages you have already received. Another display of adoration for Luke, by everyone who had the pleasure of knowing him.

Aunty Di McElhinney Chorley England:
These tributes to Luke from us, and from his amazing circle of friends, sharing their love, wisdom and insight into Luke’s life, are a joy to read and show us all what an amazing soul Luke was and always will be. In all of our hearts forever Luke.

So the massive hole in our hearts is not just felt by us, his Mum and Dad, but felt all across England and many parts of the world. We are both humbled and proud, so very proud, of the man that Luke became.

Phil and I still cannot believe, that we will never see our son again, hear his soft voice, his infectious laugh, feel his big strong hugs, smell the unique smell of our „baby“ boy, our young man.
Go on holiday with him, plan trips together, sightseeing, galleries, all the fun and laughter we shared, all of the things that made our life worthwhile.

Now, with Luke gone, we are struggling to find a purpose to our lives.

All of our joy has been ripped from us,
Each day the constant,ceaseless pain and grief.

The huge empty hole in our life. Our grief for the life taken away from Luke, in such a cruel, malicious and cowardly way.

How can we ever remove the image of our son’s dying body, bleeding to death, all alone on a strange street corner.

I think, if you can die of a broken heart, then Phil and I are surely dying, day by long painful day.

Just trying to live through each day is exhausting, the mental pain and stress unbelievably draining, all of our pleasure in life now gone.

Nothing matters any more, we cannot find the will to live our lives without Luke.

We will never come to terms with his cruel, malicious murder.
Murdered by that sly, evil, coward.

Sadly, we feel that if a previous murder, that of Burak Bektaş, had been investigated properly, our son may still be alive today.

The defence council attempted to show Luke wasn‘t a saint, but as his life and the tributes to that life have shown, he was the nearest thing to one that we have ever known.

I think the following words of Luke’s sum up our precious son perfectly.
I asked Luke how his studies were going at Oxford University, if he was OK and happy. At the time, he was on the Oxford panel that choose and fund small start up business’s.
Luke said to me „Mum, all of these people, these inventors, come to me, to show me their new ideas, their inventions
….They hold them out to me, to show me, like they are showing me their new born babies…..
It’s such an HONOUR Mum.“

Rita Holland, mother of Luke Holland