Germany arrests second soldier in far-right plot

2017-05-09 18:16
(Michael Sohn, AP)

(Michael Sohn, AP)

Multimedia   ·   User Galleries   ·   News in Pictures Send us your pictures  ·  Send us your stories

Berlin - German authorities arrested a second soldier on Tuesday on allegations he was part of a far-right plot to assassinate prominent political figures and blame the attack on refugees in a case that has raised concerns about extremism within the country's military.

Maximilian T, 27, was arrested in the southwestern city of Kehl on charges of preparing an act of violence, said federal prosecutor's spokesperson Frauke Koehler.

His apprehension follows the arrest in April of 28-year-old Lt Franco A, a Bundeswehr soldier stationed with a Franco-German brigade in Illkirch, just across the border from Kehl in France.

Their last names weren't released in line with privacy laws.

In a case authorities have called "more than strange", Lt Franco is alleged to have managed to pass himself off as a Syrian refugee in the state of Hesse at the end of 2015 and be granted a place at a home for asylum-seekers, as well as state financial aid for migrants.

Though stationed with the Bundeswehr in France, he lived sporadically at the refugee home and Maximilian is alleged to have covered him, at times, when he was absent from the barracks, prosecutors said.

Asylum seekers

Lt Franco came to the attention of authorities after he was arrested in February while going to retrieve a pistol he'd stashed in a Vienna airport bathroom.

He was freed, but Austrian authorities informed Germany and when the soldier's fingerprint matched the one he'd given when he registered as a refugee, it triggered the current investigation.

In addition to the two soldiers, a 24-year-old student from Lt Franco's hometown of Offenbach, Matthias F, has also been arrested.

Koehler said the three are believed to have been planning to attack "high-ranking politicians and public figures who, in the eyes of the suspects, engaged in failed refugee policies".

Among others on a list they put together were former German President Joachim Gauck and Justice Minister Heiko Maas, she said.

Lt Franco was to carry out the attack under his "fictitious identity" as a Syrian refugee, Koehler said.

"In this way the three suspects wanted to link the attack in Germany to asylum seekers," she said.

Read more on:    germany  |  security  |  migrants

Join the conversation! encourages commentary submitted via MyNews24. Contributions of 200 words or more will be considered for publication.

We reserve editorial discretion to decide what will be published.
Read our comments policy for guidelines on contributions.

Inside News24

Traffic Alerts
There are new stories on the homepage. Click here to see them.


Create Profile

Creating your profile will enable you to submit photos and stories to get published on News24.

Please provide a username for your profile page:

This username must be unique, cannot be edited and will be used in the URL to your profile page across the entire network.


Location Settings

News24 allows you to edit the display of certain components based on a location. If you wish to personalise the page based on your preferences, please select a location for each component and click "Submit" in order for the changes to take affect.

Facebook Sign-In

Hi News addict,

Join the News24 Community to be involved in breaking the news.

Log in with Facebook to comment and personalise news, weather and listings.