The first trials are opening of people charged over New Year's Eve crimes in Cologne, with three men going to court on theft charges.
- Germany: Asylum seekers who participated in Cologne sexual assaults could be deported
- From Cairo to Cologne: Is public sexual harassment really endemic to Arab culture?
- Merkel: Refugees must leave Germany once war is over
The spate of thefts and assaults on women outside Cologne's main station, blamed largely on foreigners, caused public uproar as Germany deals with a huge influx of migrants. More than 1,000 criminal complaints were filed, over 400 of those alleging crimes of a sexual nature.
Neither of the two trials scheduled in Cologne Wednesday involves allegations of sexual assaults.
A 23-year-old Moroccan man is accused of stealing a cellphone from a woman as she photographed the city's cathedral. In a separate case, a 22-year-old Tunisian and an 18-year-old Moroccan are charged with stealing a camera from a man.