Presidential races

Virginia GOP hits Kaine over case of convicted murderer

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The Virginia GOP is raising questions about Democratic vice presidential nominee Tim Kaine’s role in seeking to send a convicted murderer back to his home country of Germany, where he would likely be released. 

{mosads}Near the end of Kaine’s term as governor, in 2010, he agreed to ask the Department of Justice to approve the transfer of Jens Soering to a German prison, according to the Richmond-Times Dispatch.

Soering, a former University of Virginia student, was convicted of murdering his girlfriend’s parents in 1985. 

He was given two consecutive life sentences. 

Kaine has said he thought Germans should pay the costs of Soering’s incarceration after Virginia had done so for 20 years and that shipping him out of the state would be “good riddance.” 

Virginia Republican state delegates have revived the issue as Kaine has become Hillary Clinton’s running mate. 

Kaine “knew that this effectively meant that this double-murderer was going to get released,” said Del. C. Todd Gilbert. 

“Look, we have lots of foreign nationals in our prisons in Virginia — lots of foreign nationals that have done horrible things that are similarly supposed to be there for the rest of their lives. Why Jens Soering was any different that those other murderers is an unanswered question to this day. And Senator Kaine has never given a good answer.” 

Kaine’s spokeswoman Amy Dudley stood by the senator’s previous explanations for the transfer.

“After receiving assurances from the German government that Jens Soering had been convicted to a life sentence in Germany, and would never be allowed to enter the U.S. again, then-Governor Kaine recommended the Department of Justice consider transferring him into the German penal system where his own country could pay for his life imprisonment rather than Virginia taxpayers. He has had no involvement in the case since January 2010.”

Tags Hillary Clinton Tim Kaine

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