Family’s fight to expose authorities
compiled from various sources
published: 17 February 2009
Updates on this case will be listed at the foot of this item
German police refused to reopen their investigation into what they declared from the start was a ‘suicide’ This is in spite of evidence being presented by the family that Jeremiah Duggan, a young Jewish man, may have been subjected to a sustained mental attack or a physical attack or both.
The view that Jeremiah was fleeing for his life when he was killed has not been investigated as the German police are convinced it was a suicide. The German Police Inspector told [Jeremiah’s parents], Erica and Hugo Duggan, that they did not want to investigate the people from the LaRouche Organization.
Jeremiah had travelled to Germany to attend what he thought was an anti-war conference before discovering that the groups he had joined, the Schiller Institute and its associated newspaper, Nouvelle Solidarité, were run by the American Lyndon LaRouche, a convicted fraudster with a history of anti-Semitism.
He called his mother on the night he died to warn her that he was in trouble. In the first call he whispered: ‘Mum, I’m in trouble, deep trouble. I want to be out of this, it’s too much for me.’ In the next, seconds later, he screamed: I’m frightened, I want to see you now.’ Before she could reply, the line went dead. Forty-five minutes later, he was allegedly run over by two cars on a motorway just outside Wiesbaden, western Germany, on 27 March 2003. German police investigations asserted that Jeremiah, who was studying English literature at the Sorbonne in Paris, and French at the British Institute, had committed suicide.
Alarm bells began ringing for the young mans family after his parents, Erica and Hugo Duggan, from Golders Green, north London, had travelled to Wiesbaden the day after his death. “The police said Sebastien Drochon, a young man who had travelled and stayed with Jeremiah, had already left,” says Erica. “He was the last person to see my son alive, yet the police were not going to question him.”
In November 2003 a British coroner dismissed the German suicide verdict. Dr William Dolman stated: “I could not accept the bald conclusion that Jeremiah Duggan intended to take his own life.” He added that Jeremiah had been, “In a state of terror.” A subsequent inquest in London ruled that such a verdict was “impossible.” His family believe he may have been fleeing from cult members when he was killed.
A German police report revealed a number of errors, assumptions and contradictions that suggested that there had been an inadequate investigation into what was undoubtedly a suspicious death. It also showed that the police took no official signed statements from witnesses, failed to carry out an autopsy and decided within hours that Mr Duggan had committed suicide by throwing himself in front of the vehicles.
Jeremiah’s family met British government officials in March 2004 to demand help in reopening an inquiry. They wanted pressure put on the German authorities to reopen the investigation into their son’s death. Mrs Duggan attended a meeting with Foreign Office staff but was told that officials were powerless to force German authorities to reopen investigations into his death.
She said; “I am not saying the meeting was not successful, though. I felt initially disappointed, but they did say they will reflect on it. They have sent a copy of the inquest report to the German authorities.
Of the shady organisation known as Schiller Institute, Jeremiah’s mother said; ‘I don’t believe he knew about the Institute because he decided to go spontaneously and had no time to research it. All he told me was that it was an anti-war gathering of the Left.’
Until recent years one of the key founders of Schiller Institute, Lyndon LaRouche, was virtually unknown in Britain, while in the United States he was dismissed as a crackpot, ignored by both the media and the political world. But since the death of Jeremiah Duggan, his organisation has come under closer scrutiny than it has ever been for decades. LaRouche is also a convicted fraudster and conspiracy theorist par excellence.
In 2007 following growing unease over the case of Jeremiah, MPs signed an early day motion in the Commons calling on ministers to reopen the British inquest into his death.
The MPs, from Labour, the Tories and the Liberal Democrats, said they were concerned that Duggan’s relatives have been frustrated in their attempts to obtain a full investigation. They added that “compelling forensic evidence published in March 2007 on the fourth anniversary of Duggan’s death casts doubt on the current version of events”. Declaring that “further investigation of the case is now urgently required”, they call on “the attorney general to liaise with his German counterpart as a matter of urgency to establish the truth”.
In November 2008 Jeremiah’s mother won a landmark case to challenge the Attorney General’s decision not to grant her a new inquest. Mrs Duggan said: “This is the best outcome we could have wished for. The court said we had a lot of important evidence that the original post mortem missed. I feel we made history today. But it is really shocking we have had to go through this. Why should I have to fight my own country for justice for my son?”
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