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CRIME

Neo-Nazi thugs young and uneducated

Neo-Nazi delinquents are mostly young people with low levels of educational achievement, a new report shows.

The study, from the Berlin office for the protection of the constitution, said most attacks were not planned. Ehrhart Körting (SPD), Berlin senator for the interior, presented the study on Thursday:

“The avoidance of rightwing violence and the development of preventative and intervening measures remains a task for all of society,” Ehrhart told the Berliner Zeitung.

The study included 300 young people between the ages of 15 and 24 who have committed violent crimes with far-right associations.

The researchers focused on the sequence of events involved in the crimes, the location of the crimes and other distinctive features of the crimes and the people who committed them such as where the delinquents lived, their age, their education and criminal record.

Most crimes committed by rightwing extremists are carried out near where the delinquents live and usually take place where groups of neo-Nazi youth meet. This study was a follow-up of previous studies on rightwing violence conducted in 1998 and 2003.

CRIME

German man jailed for killing petrol station worker in mask row

A 50-year-old German man was jailed for life Tuesday for shooting dead a petrol station cashier because he was angry about being told to wear a mask while buying beer.

German man jailed for killing petrol station worker in mask row

The September 2021 murder in the western town of Idar-Oberstein shocked Germany, which saw a vocal anti-mask and anti-vaccine movement emerge in response to the government’s coronavirus restrictions.

The row started when 20-year-old student worker Alex W. asked the man to put on a mask inside the shop, as required in all German stores at the time.

After a brief argument, the man left.

The perpetrator – identified only as Mario N. – returned about an hour and a half later, this time wearing a mask. But as he bought his six-pack of beer to the till, he took off his mask and another argument ensued.

He then pulled out a revolver and shot the cashier in the head point-blank.

On Tuesday, the district court in Bad-Kreuznach convicted Mario N. of murder and unlawful possession of a firearm, and handed him a life sentence.

READ ALSO: Shock in Germany after cashier shot dead in Covid mask row

Under German law, people given a life sentence can usually seek parole after 15 years. His defence team had sought a sentence of manslaughter, rather than murder.

At the start of the trial, prosecutor Nicole Frohn told how Mario N. had felt increasingly angry about the measures imposed to curb the pandemic, seeing them as an infringement on his rights.

“Since he knew he couldn’t reach the politicians responsible, he decided to kill him (Alex W.),” she said.

Mario N. turned himself in to police the day after the shooting.

German has relaxed most of its coronavirus rules, although masks are still required in some settings, such as public transport.

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