Eight medics have been charged with manslaughter for failing to prevent a male nurse suspected of killing hundreds of patients over a 15-year period while they worked alongside him at two different hospitals in Germany.
The employees from the Oldenburg and Delmenhorst clinics, both in Lower Saxony in north-western Germany, are due to appear in court on 17th February 2022 on charges of manslaughter through either omission or for aiding and abetting.
They are accused of having failed to stop male nurse Niels Hoegel, 44, murdering 85 patients. The eight defendants will be represented in court by 20 defence lawyers.
Hoegel was jailed for life by the Oldenburg regional court in June 2019 after he was convicted over the murder of 85, with the final total believed to be many times higher and over a far longer period.
Hoegel was convicted of injecting his victims with lethal drugs between 2000 and 2005. He first committed his crimes at the Oldenburg Clinic before moving to the Delmenhorst Clinic in 2002, where he continued to murder.
The trial is aimed at looking into eight of the deaths for which he was convicted, and whether they could have been prevented by the other members of staff who were his colleagues at the time.
Estimates surrounding how many people Hoegel killed have varied and they increased after his conviction.
He is believed to have claimed upwards of 300 lines over 15 years, which would make him one of the most prolific serial killers in the history of Germany.