Bushido trial: Anna-Maria reports on the shock moment

Bushido at one of the previous days of the trial with attorney Tzschoppe (archive picture). Image: dpa

Anna-Maria reports on Bushido’s shock moment: “He cried and only said: ‘He will never let me go'”

The day of the trial is less than three minutes old, and things are already heated. Bushido did not appear in court that day. Remaining attorney Tzschoppe, who represents him, is on the other hand. This complains about the process. Some media were “fed” with explosive information, and then a video appeared over the weekend. He is referring to a video that was published by the rapper Cashomo and shows Bushido verbally harassing a girl in a hotel room 16 years ago. In a statement on Instagram, Bushido confirmed the incident and apologized.

For attorney Tzschoppe these are “things that are used to try to influence the witness.” With the witness is meant Anna-Maria Ferchichi. Bushido’s wife. For the third time she had to testify against Arafat Abou-Chaker and his three brothers today.

But even before that there is a verbal exchange of blows. “If you sit in a glass house, you shouldn’t throw stones,” replies lawyer Birkhoff, the defender of Arafat Abou-Chaker. After all, it was Mr. Ferchichi, as Bushido is called, and his wife who staged a “ridiculous magazine”, as Birkhoff put it, for RTL the day before Anna-Maria gave testimony. Lawyer Tzschoppe should therefore “be careful with such statements,” teased Birkhoff. This reacts sloppily: “You don’t have to tell me how to do my job.” Birkhoff counters: “I don’t have to, but I do.”

It is a symptomatic scene for a process that many now perceive to be exaggerated and staged. But the two lawyers weren’t supposed to clash for the last time that day.

Chat histories question Anna-Maria’s statement during the Bushido trial

The defenders of the Abou-Chakers had already applied on the last day of the trial to allow chat histories between Anna-Maria and Arafat as evidence. These chat messages would show that the relationship between the two is thoroughly friendly and familiar. And not as compulsively as Anna-Maria had previously described in her testimony.

In fact, the chat history is read out, which leads to a kind of staged reading, with the presiding judge in the role of Arafat Abou-Chaker and the assistant judge in the role of Anna-Maria Ferchichi. Even one or the other lawyer couldn’t help but grin.

The messages read aloud are about the temporary separation of Anna-Maria and Bushido. At that time she told Arafat that she was living with her parents again, but that Bushido could still see the children whenever he wanted. Arafat assured her support at the time, according to the chat history. This contradicts Anna-Maria’s statement, which Arafat described as aggressive and addicted to control and, according to his own statements, therefore only maintained the most necessary contact with her husband’s music manager.

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Anna-Maria gets entangled in testimony

In order to underpin the impression of a friendly relationship between Arafat and Anna-Maria, a lawyer for the Abou-Chakers announced that he would like to present further chat histories. But then there is a break first. Then it was time for the witness Ferchichi to appear. She should be asked about the chat messages.

Suddenly Anna-Maria says that she would like to volunteer beforehand to comment on the chat messages that were read out the last time. There were always friendly moments with Arafat, she argues. “There were 100 emails in which I asked him for something. There was no other person in our life who took care of something. There was no other person we could have asked,” she explains of her contact with Arafat. Therefore, the chat histories that are still to be read out would sound like a friendly and open-minded relationship.

Lawyer Birkhoff pricked up his ears. He wants to know from Anna-Maria how she knows which chat histories should still be read out. After all, she hadn’t been in the courtroom at that time. She replies that she has been informed by her lawyer. But even that was not yet in the courtroom when the announcement of the reading of the chat history was announced.

The suspicion: Bushido’s lawyer, attorney Tzschoppe, could have informed them about the project during the break, which would be a clear violation of the procedural rules. This reacts vehemently. The accusation is “wrong,” he snaps. “You are the only one who is considered to have informed them,” Birkhoff rumbled back. Finally, the brief screaming was stopped by the judge. Who really informed Anna-Maria about the proceedings in the courtroom cannot be clarified on that day. But it was indicative of how heated up the minds are now after 38 days of negotiations.

After the lunch break, the other chats between Anna-Maria and Arafat were read out. In one, she announced that she wanted to surprise Bushido with a visit to one of his concerts and asked Arafat for help. In another, she asks if he knows where to get an iPhone repaired. And in another, she asks him to help her build her house in Kleinmachnow. Only she can’t remember the last chat, she confirms the others. Even though the news makes the relationship look friendly, Arafat has controlled her most of the time and interfered in her private life, she asserts.

Quarrel over fence led to the separation

Then the judge asks her to continue with the testimony. It is about a dispute with Arafat, which is said to have significantly moved Bushido to finally part with Arafat. In the summer of 2017, Anna-Maria and Bushido are said to have planned an exercise zone for their dog in the garden. To do this, they wanted to build a fence. Arafat, whose house is also on the shared property, came along and wanted to determine where the fence should run. The subsequent dispute was “completely escalated”, describes Anna-Maria. After she refused to bow to Arafat’s ideas, he insulted and yelled at her in the worst possible way. Shocked by the intensity of the dispute, Bushido is said to have said to his wife at the time:

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For Anna-Maria that was by no means a relief: “I felt so sorry for my husband because I knew what was coming. I knew that our lives would change. But not for the better,” she said in court. And further: “I knew it was going to be dangerous. My husband has given him (Arafat) 10 million in the last few years. He was a cash cow who let himself be squeezed. You don’t let someone like that go.”

Then she got to the crucial part of her testimony. The alleged incident, which is said to have occurred in January 2018 in the joint office of Arafat and Bushido. Faced with the impending separation, Arafat is said to have imprisoned, insulted and threatened Bushido, according to the indictment. Besides Bushido, there are no witnesses for the allegations. Everyone involved in this alleged incident is now in the dock. Only Anna-Maria is said to have seen the consequences of the dispute at the time. Therefore, she is considered the most important witness.

Bushido: “It was so bad. He will never let me go”

She was “full of expectation” for the conversation between Bushido and Arafat, she reported. They hoped that a solution would be found. Only when Bushido was still not back from the meeting after four hours did she worry. When he finally came, he had “a red mark on his face” and “just stared into space”. She kept yelling at him about what had happened. But Bushido kept stammering in tears: “It was so bad.” And: “He will never let me go.” Anna-Maria is also fighting back tears now.

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Bushido didn’t tell her exactly what happened until the next day. Arafat insulted and humiliated him and his family in the worst, threatened him and threw a bottle at him. After she found out, she immediately informed the LKA and asked for help – without Bushido’s knowledge. It was about blackmail and that she was afraid, she told an employee of the LKA.

What she also tells in court: Veysel K., a former companion of Arafat, who is considered a “man for the rough”, is said to have been present in the incident and to have stood up for Bushido. At some point he asked Bushido to leave the office with him. But Bushido stayed.

The question remains: Why didn’t Bushido leave the office with Veysel K.? The judge asked Anna-Maria this question twice. She doesn’t have a plausible answer. Veysel K. will also no longer be able to be questioned about this. In March of this year, the criminal with multiple criminal records was deported to Turkey.

Even if not all questions can be clarified on that day, Anna-Maria’s statement could point the way to the process, which seems to be getting more and more confused. In the end, she explains that she had text messages from the night of the crime, which are supposed to show what a desperate situation she and Bushido were in at the time. The judge states that he would like to see this news very much. He won’t be the only one. With that, Anna-Maria was dismissed from the witness stand for the time being. It continues on June 30th.

You can find all other articles on the Bushido process here.

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