The mother of a British student who died in Germany after allegedly becoming involved with a “dangerous” right-wing political cult vowed today to continue her fight to find out what happened to him.
Erica Duggan pledged to continue her campaign after a coroner noted that her son Jeremiah, 22, had been in “a state of terror” before his death.
Mr Duggan, of Golders Green, north London, died in March after running into the path of two vehicles near Wiesbaden.
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Hornsey coroner Dr William Dolman said he was unable from the outset to accept the German investigator’s conclusion that Mr Duggan intended to take his own life.
The coroner heard that Mr Duggan had telephoned his mother shortly before his death, saying he was frightened and in big trouble.
The inquest heard that Mr Duggan, who was Jewish, had travelled from Paris where he was studying to attend a meeting of the Schiller Institute, described in court by his family as a “dangerous and political cult with strong anti-Semitic tendencies.”
Mrs Duggan told Dr Dolman that her research showed the Schiller Institute was linked to Lyndon LaRouche, who had been an American presidential candidate.
Dr Dolman said there were a lot of unanswered questions but the Wiesbaden public prosecutor had closed the file on the case.
He recorded a narrative verdict in which he said Mr Duggan received fatal head injuries when he ran into a road in Wiesbaden and was hit by two private cars.
He added: “He had earlier been in a state of terror.”
Afterwards, Mrs Duggan, 57, told reporters: “It’s been six or seven very hard months, the shock of the phone calls, the shock of learning that he was killed, and then finding that we had to fight, struggle, just to have his death investigated.
“But I feel that this inquest has really been the first step in what will be a campaign to find out the truth about how he died, and to seek justice.
“I also feel that the German authorities owe it to us to find out how he was killed and what happened.
“I would expect them to leave no stone unturned and investigate every aspect of the Lyndon LaRouche, Schiller Institute, in order that students who come from abroad and are in Germany can freely attend conferences and be safe.
“I’m frightened that I am a small person against an organisation worldwide, the Lyndon LaRouche Organisation. I’m hoping that, as they’re out to reconstruct the world, they will help us and come forward so we can find out what really happened.”
Her barrister Leslie Thomas said: “The verdict today sends a clear message to the German authorities that their investigation into the sudden and unexpected death of Jeremiah Duggan is totally inadequate.
“Jeremiah Duggan died in very suspicious circumstances. These circumstances call for a full and proper investigation, including the interviewing of witnesses, not just at the scene of the road traffic incident but also those who had care of Jeremiah whilst he was in Wiesbaden, members of the Lyndon LaRouche, Schiller Institute.
“The family are extremely pleased with the coroner’s judgment, which reflects their concerns in this case.”