• Germany's news in English
 
jobs_header_v3

Man tries to buy Kalashnikov for 'Prussian police force'

The Local · 21 Jan 2016, 16:55

Published: 21 Jan 2016 16:55 GMT+01:00

Facebook Twitter Google+ reddit

The 31-year-old made two attempts to obtain the Russian-made fully-automatic weapon from an arms trader in Luxembourg in 2014, state prosecutors in Paderborn, North Rhine-Westphalia, said on Thursday.

Rather than present a German passport, the man presented a 'nationality document' from a supposed 'Free State of Prussia'.

After the dealer alerted police back in Germany, they raided a number of houses and apartments in the Höxter district near Paderborn, North Rhine-Westphaliia.

But all they found was a small amount of ammunition.

The suspect himself said that he wanted to acquire the weapon so as to found a police force for the 'Free State of Prussia'.

But he will now be prosecuted for infringing on the law controlling weapons of war.

Prussia long-since defunct

Prussia was a historical reality – first as the kingdom ruled by the Hohenzollerns, who became Emperors of the united German Empire in 1871, and then as a 'Free State' after the Kaiser's abdication at the end of the First World War.

Prussia, whose capital was Berlin, extended from central Germany all the way to modern-day Lithuania, as well as controlling different parts of the west German Rhineland throughout its history.

The Prussian state flag from the German Empire period. Image: David Liuzzo/Wikimedia Commons

But it has not existed as a political unit since 1947, when it was abolished by the Allied Control Council that took over management of what had until then been Hitler's Third Reich.

The Allies believed that Prussian culture had included a particularly dangerous strain of militarism that had inspired the Nazis in their ambitions to conquer all of Europe.

Conspiracy theorists dream of Reich

While some more sympathetic historians in Germany and abroad have argued in recent years that Prussian imagery and culture were twisted and abused by the Nazis into something very different from its original form, others within Germany have incorporated it into their conspiracy theories.

It's a favourite hobby-horse of the so-called "Reichsbürger" (Reich Citizens) movement.

Reichsbürger believe that because there was no peace treaty, the Second World War never really ended, that the Federal Republic of Germany is thus illegal – and that the German Empire therefore still exists and should rightly regain the borders it had in 1937.

They often refuse to follow the laws or obey the authorities of the Federal Republic and have been known to refuse to pay taxes and create their own identity and other papers.

Some Reichsbürger adherents have links to violent far-right groups and are under surveillance by the security services.

SEE ALSO: Eurovision pick is famed for anti-gay song

For more news from Germany, join us on Facebook and Twitter.

The Local (news@thelocal.de)

Facebook Twitter Google+ reddit


Your comments about this article

Today's headlines
Berlin vs Munich: whose newborn polar bear is cuter?
Berlin's (left) and Munich's (right) newborn bears. Photos: Tierpark Berlin / DPA

Both city zoos welcomed baby polar bears into the world in November, with Berlin zoo its releasing first photos on Friday. But which one is more adorable?

Learn how to speak German like a silver screen icon
Dirty Harry. Photo: DPA

We all agree that there is no other option than to learn irregular German verbs by rote. But when you want a bit of downtime, why not learn from your big screen heroes?

Stolen Dachau 'Work will set you free' gate found: police
The entrance to Sachsenhausen concentration camp. Photo: DPA

An iron gate from the former Nazi concentration camp in Germany's Dachau with the slogan "Arbeit macht frei" ("Work will set you free") has been found two years after it was stolen, police said Friday.

Mystery flight path artist draws new message in sky
Photo: DPA

A pilot who likes to draw patterns in the sky using his flight path has returned with his greatest artwork yet.

Berlin 'abusing power' to stop Snowden coming to Germany
Edward Snowden. Photo: DPA

Opposition parties have accused the coalition government of overstepping its authority in its attempt to block American whistleblower Edward Snowden's trip to Germany.

Germany gains record number of Michelin-star restaurants
Head of the Michelin Guide, Michael Ellis (centre) with Michelin-star chefs at a presentation in Berlin. Photo: DPA.

Germany had a slew of newly minted Michelin-star restaurants this year, and its top-rated establishments held onto their prestigious three stars.

At last: Germany passes major disabled rights reform
People in wheelchairs watch as the German parliament deliberates on the new disability rights reform. Photo: DPA.

For years people with disabilities in Germany have called for legislation to provide them with better benefits and opportunities in life and work. On Thursday the German parliament passed such a reform - but is it enough?

How new German rules are holding refugee families apart
Children wait for food in Jarablus, Syria. Photo: DPA

Germany, trying to staunch the flow of Syrian refugees, has placed high hurdles for them to be reunited with their families, creating a Kafkaesque nightmare in the courts.

10 German Christmas cookies you have to bake this winter
Photo: DPA

Fire up your ovens and get ready to bake - here are ten festive German cookies and pastries that'll send your senses into paroxysms of yuletide joy.

5 things we learnt reading Germany's first Charlie Hebdo
Photo: DPA.

The very first German edition of Charlie Hebdo hit the shelves across the country on Thursday. So what can Germans expect if they buy it?

Lifestyle
10 German Christmas cookies you have to bake this winter
Sponsored Article
The key to launching your international career
Lifestyle
Our 10-step guide for doing Christmas just like a German
National
Here's why so many Germans vote for the far-right AfD
National
7 events in Germany that'll make December unforgettable
Lifestyle
7 frosty German sayings to make you a winter wordsmith
National
This is how unequal German society has become
National
Six things you should know about the Lufthansa strike
National
9 ways living in Germany will make you a better person
National
These 10 German Christmas markets cannot be missed
Features
8 German words that unlock amazing secrets in English
Culture
10 German words with simply hilarious literal translations
Lifestyle
7 things Germans do that make foreigners feel awkward
International
Why Donald Trump's grandad was booted out of Germany
National
This is what is really inside your Döner kebab
National
Rejoice! Christmas markets start opening across Germany
Education
These German universities are best at landing you a job
Travel
Why Heidelberg is Germany's most inspiring city
Lifestyle
This soppy German Christmas ad will bring you to tears
National
Here's where Germans speak the best (and worst) English
Culture
10 German books you have to read before you die
Culture
U-Bahn train found filled with autumn foliage in Berlin
Features
Seven German words that unlock amazing secrets about English
Travel
Germany's ten most beautiful towns you've never visited
6,627
jobs available
Toytown Germany
Germany's English-speaking crowd