'Serial killer nurse' charged with 97 more murders by German prosecutors

Germany

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Niels Hoegel's deadly drugs of choice were ajmaline, lidocaine and calcium chloride - medications that he would administer to send his patients into arrhythmia, or force their blood pressure to crash to dangerously low levels.

A German nurse who is already serving a life sentence for previous murder convictions was charged Monday with killing a staggering 97 more patients in clinics in Oldenburg and Delmenhorst in the northwest of the country.

The third trial of Niels Hoegel, 41, is expected to start later this year, a court spokesman in the northern city of Oldenburg said.

The announcement came after investigators completed examinations of patients who died, while Hoegel served as a nurse.

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A new indictment charges Hoegel with killing an additional 97 patients at two different hospitals over half a decade. He worked at the Oldenburg hospital from 1999 to 2002 and in Delmenhorst from 2003 to 2005.

Prosecutor Martin Koziolek said three suspicious cases didn't produce enough evidence to be on the list of killings. If convicted, it would at most affect Hoegel's possibility of parole - in Germany, people serving life sentences are generally considered for parole after 15 years.

A variety of drugs were used in his resuscitation attempts.

"In all cases (Mr Hoegel) at least accepted the death of the patients as a result of the effect of the drugs", German prosecutors said in a statement.

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PC Schulze said that it wasn't known whether the man was involved but that investigators considered him a person of interest . The FBI said it will continue work with state and local law enforcement to identify the person or persons responsible.

He was jailed for life in 2015, but at the time it was clear he had murdered many more patients, with investigators admitting they may never know the true number as some remains had been cremated.

In Britain, Dr. Harold Shipman was believed to have killed as many as 250 people, majority elderly and middle-aged women who were his patients.

Detectives also exhumed 134 bodies from 67 cemeteries and questioned Hoegel six times.

Police believe Hoegel killed his first victim in early 2000 and then moved from hospital to hospital, managing to hide his killing spree with seeming ease.

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