The Helsinki district court has sentenced a 32-year-old man originally from Kosovo to 10 years in prison over a shooting incident that took place in downtown Helsinki in July. The man was found guilty on three counts of attempted murder as well as other offences.
The defendant was found to have opened fire on three brothers in broad daylight at the intersection of Hietalahdenkatu and Porkkalankatu in Helsinki’s Kamppi district. Two of the targets sustained serious injuries during the shooting.
The suspect was taken into the custody soon after the incident and had been in remand since July.
According to the court, the motive for the offences remain unclear, although the shooter mentioned a row between his family and that of the victims, all of whom were originally from Kosovo.
Two of the brothers who were shot had been fined for assaulting the shooter. The court said that one of them had hit the 32-year-old in the head a few hours before the shooting.
Another man with the same surname as the brothers had also been convicted for assaulting the gunman at the end of 2018.
Family beef behind incident
A preliminary investigation by police as well as the prosecutor suggested that the gunplay had been the result of a grievance between two families.
At the beginning of the trial in November, the prosecution said that the parties – the gunman and the three brothers – all came from the same city in Kosovo and that there were tensions between the two groups.
The defendant had been assaulted three times before the shooting incident. The prosecutor said that the most recent attack had taken place at a construction site just hours before the shooting and that one of the brothers had been involved.
After the incident at the construction site, the suspect had gone to his home in Vantaa to fetch a pistol before returning to Helsinki. The prosecutor said that his intention was to run into his assailant and his two brothers.
The men faced off in Helsinki during the afternoon rush hour when the armed man rammed the brothers’ car with his van. He opened fire on two of them as they ran off, hitting one.
He then went over to the car, where he shot and stabbed the lone occupant sitting in the back seat. The prosecutor described this man’s injuries as very serious.
Defendant denies attempted murder charges
The defence argued that the 32-year-old man did not intend to kill or harm anyone, but only wanted to intimidate the men.
The defendant denied the charges of attempted murder, but pled guilty to two counts of aggravated assault with excessive force and one count of endangerment.
The convicted man has lived in the Helsinki region, most recently in Vantaa. He was said to be the CEO of a construction firm established in 2014.