German prosecutor rejects Erdogan complaint over comedian case

October 14, 2016 10:46 AM EDT

Jan Boehmermann, host of the late-night "Neo Magazin Royale" on the public ZDF channel is pictured during a TV show of Markus Lanz in Hamburg, Germany, August 21, 2012. REUTERS/Morris Mac Matzen


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BERLIN (Reuters) - A senior German prosecutor has rejected a complaint filed by a lawyer for Turkey's President Tayyip Erdogan after German authorities dropped a case against a comedian accused of offending the Turkish president with an obscene poem.

The office of the chief prosecutor in Koblenz said he had rejected the Erdogan complaint and upheld a decision by lower-level prosecutors in Mainz, who said there was insufficient evidence to suggest a criminal offense.

The case centers on German comedian Jan Boehmermann, who angered Erdogan by reading out a poem on a satirical television show which suggested that Erdogan engaged in bestiality and watched child pornography.

The issue has further soured already tense relations between Germany and Turkey, and prompted Germany's ruling coalition to say it would rescind the law that forbids insults of foreign leaders later this year.

Legal experts said Erdogan could still file a lawsuit challenging the decision with the provincial high court of Koblenz, one of two such courts in the state of Rhineland-Palatinate. Such a suit would have to be filed within a month.

(Reporting by Sabine Siebold, Writing by Andrea Shalal; Editing by Mark Trevelyan)



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