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German court drops fraud case against ‘forest boy’

September 26, 2013

BERLIN (AP) — A German court has dropped a fraud case against a young Dutch man who claimed to be a teenager with memory loss who had been living in the woods outside Berlin.

Robin van Helsum, now 21, was accused of wrongfully claiming help from Berlin youth services for months. His situation fell apart in June 2012 when he admitted making up a story that his parents were dead and he didn’t know who he was or where he was from.

A Berlin court on Thursday dropped the case against him on condition that he performs 150 hours of community work and receives counseling.

It said prosecutors agreed to the move but that the decision doesn’t rule out Berlin youth services trying to claim money back from the Dutchman.

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