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Canada Threatening letters against politicians: two suspects caught

15:00  30 october  2020
15:00  30 october  2020 Source:   dw.com

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The perpetrators are said to have sent threatening letters to at least 15 ministers since December and to have carried out an arson attack on a building belonging to the Federal Labor Office. Investigators have now arrested a couple in Berlin.

Polizisten einer Spezialeinheit bei einer Razzia (Symbolbild) © Jens Büttner / dpa / picture alliance Police officers from a special unit during a raid (symbol image)

After a nationwide threat and intimidation campaign allegedly motivated by left-wing extremists, the police in Berlin caught two suspects. There is a 38 year old man and a 39 year old woman. As the Baden-Württemberg State Criminal Police Office and the Stuttgart Public Prosecutor announced, the duo has been accused of sending various threatening letters to politicians, authorities and transport associations since December 2019 and of depositing an incendiary device on the private home of the meat manufacturer Clemens Tönnies in Rheda-Wiedenbrück in North Rhine-Westphalia in August 2020 to have. This incendiary device did not ignite.

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An arson attack on a building of the Federal Employment Agency (BA) in Nuremberg - also in August - is said to be the fault of the accused. It lit, but not as planned. This was the only way to prevent a "significant fire effect", it said. The duo are accused of, among other things, arson and attempted arson. According to investigators, the two suspects included knives, blank cartridges and barbecue lighter in their threatening letters. Accordingly, they signed the letters and letters of confession to the incendiary devices in the name of a "collective of revolutionary action cells". According to the authorities, the arrests were made after months of cross-state investigations by the State Security as part of searches in Berlin and Stuttgart. Five objects were searched on Friday morning.

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Telltale DNA traces

The investigators discovered the couple through video recordings at a crime scene. In addition, DNA traces were found on threatening letters and crime scenes, said the prosecutor. The couple has so far not been noticed for politically motivated crimes. It had lived in Stuttgart, among other places, but was recently without a permanent address.

The intimidation campaign was directed against numerous politicians, ministries and authorities. According to earlier media reports, letters went to Federal Interior Minister Horst Seehofer (CSU), Baden-Württemberg's Prime Minister Winfried Kretschmann (Greens) and 14 state interior ministers, among others.

Auch er soll Adressat eines Drohschreibens gewesen sein: Horst Seehofer © Markus Schreiber / dpa / picture-alliance He, too, is said to have been the addressee of a threatening letter: Horst Seehofer According to the investigators, the suspects called on those affected in their threatening letters to "focus political measures on the needs of the population instead of business lobbyists ". At the same time, they threatened the use of force.

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Federal Prosecutor's Office also involved

In the meantime, the Federal Prosecutor's Office in Karlsruhe is investigating the case. Later the public prosecutor in Stuttgart took over the case. The state criminal investigation offices or other police authorities in Baden-Württemberg, North Rhine-Westphalia, Berlin and Bavaria were involved in the intensive investigation.

A group called "Revolutionary Action Cells" appeared ten years ago. At the time, she confessed to several fire and explosive attacks on government buildings in Berlin, in which no one was injured. In 2011 she also sent a threatening letter with cartridges to the then Federal Interior Minister Hans-Peter Friedrich (CSU). In 2013, the Federal Prosecutor's Office had apartments searched nationwide, among other things.

As the magazine "Der Spiegel" wrote in September, citing the investigators, it was initially unclear whether the group at that time had become active again and a so-called second generation was emerging. Alternatively, the suspects could have just picked up the name of the previous group.

kle / pg (afp, dpa)

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