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German authorities conduct large scale raids against suspected illegal arms traders

Christian Fernsby ▼ | July 9, 2020
Investigators in Germany and Austria conducted a large-scale operation against 12 suspected illegal arms traders, the public prosecutor's office in Munich announced.
Joachim Herrmann
Minister   Joachim Herrmann
During the searches in various premises by around 200 police officers in several German federal states and Austria, one suspect was arrested and would be presented to the judge, according to the public prosecutor's office.

Topics: German arms

Investigators also seized weapons, ammunition as well as right-wing extremist propaganda material. In addition, a large number of computers, laptops and mobile phones were seized and would be analyzed.

Investigations into the German nationals were initiated on the suspicion of a violation of arms laws. According to German authorities, the suspects were believed to have delivered weapons from Croatia to Germany with "connections to Switzerland and Austria."

"This is to be taken very seriously, even if investigations into the motives are still ongoing," said Bavarian state's interior minister Joachim Herrmann.

According to current investigations, the suspects were associated with the right-wing extremism and the Reichsbuerger, a group which does not recognize the legitimacy of the Federal Republic of Germany and does not recognize the German government.

About 19,000 people, including 950 right-wing extremists, were considered to belong to the movement, according to the Federal Office for the Protection of the Constitution.

In March, German Interior Minister Horst Seehofer had already banned a right-wing extremist sub-group of the Reichsbuerger. "We relentlessly continue the fight against right-wing extremism even in times of crisis," stressed Seehofer.