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CRIME

Two arrested in attack on Passau police chief

Passau police have arrested two neo-Nazi suspects in the attempted murder of the city’s police chief Alois Mannichl, local daily Passauer Neue Presse reported on Monday.

Two arrested in attack on Passau police chief
A file photo of Alois Mannichl. Photo: DPA

Authorities are considering whether the suspects will face preliminary court proceedings, senior public prosecutor Helmut Walch told the paper. “But we are investigating other people in the far-right spectrum independently of this.”

The two suspects were arrested not far from 52-year-old Mannichl’s home near Passau, where he was found slumped on his porch with stab wounds to his abdomen. Walch did not reveal the time of the arrest or the ages of the suspects due to “investigative reasons.”

Local newspaper Am Sonntag reported Mannichl answered his front door on Saturday to a tall skinhead at around 5:30 pm on Saturday. The man said something along the lines of “Greetings from the national resistance,” and said, “You leftist pig cop, you won’t trample on the graves of our comrades any more,” before stabbing Mannichl in the stomach with a 12-centimetre knife.

He then threw the knife away in the garden and ran to a waiting car in the nearby street and was driven away.

Although Mannichl was seriously wounded, he was able to speak to colleagues who arrived on the scene and give them a description of the man who he said he had not seen before.

Mannichl is said to be out of danger after an operation, but remains seriously wounded, the paper said.

Investigators said they were looking for the attacker within Bavarian fascist groups.

Far-right resentment in the region against the police reached a high point this July after the authorities ordered that the grave of a former neo-Nazi functionary be opened so that a Nazi flag that had been buried with the coffin, be removed.

The local far-right extremist NPD party had accused the police chief of making the group feel harassed on November 16 as they marked the defeat of Nazi Germany at the end of World War II.

Bavarian State Premier Horst Seehofer said on Sunday evening that this “new dimension” of right-wing extremist violence required a “new and very clear and hard answer from the state,” adding that the Bavarian cabinet would on Tuesday discuss the possibility of banning the NPD party.

CRIME

Driver in Bavaria gets €5,000 fine for giving the finger to speed camera

A driver in Passau has been hit with a €5,000 fine because he was caught by traffic police giving the middle finger.

Driver in Bavaria gets €5,000 fine for giving the finger to speed camera

The district court of Passau sentenced the 53-year-old motorist to the fine after he was caught making the rude gesture in the direction of the speedometer last August on the A3 near the Donautal Ost service area, reported German media. 

The man was not caught speeding, however. According to traffic police who were in the speed camera vehicle at the time, another driver who had overtaken the 53-year-old was over the speed limit. 

When analysing the photo, the officers discovered the slower driver’s middle finger gesture and filed a criminal complaint.

The driver initially filed an objection against a penalty order, and the case dragged on for several months. However, he then accepted the complaint. He was sentenced to 50 ‘unit fines’ of €100 on two counts of insulting behaviour, amounting to €5,000.

READ ALSO: The German rules of the road that are hard to get your head around

In a letter to police, the man said he regretted the incident and apologised. 

Police said it was “not a petty offence”, and that the sentence could have been “even more drastic”.

People who give insults while driving can face a prison sentences of up to a year.

“Depending on the nature and manner of the incident or in the case of persons with a previous conviction, even a custodial sentence without parole may be considered for an insult,” police in Passau said. 

What does the law say?

Showing the middle finger to another road user in road traffic is an offence in Germany under Section 185 of the Criminal Code (StGB). It’s punishable by a prison sentence of up to one year or a fine.

People can file a complaint if someone shows them the middle finger in road traffic, but it usually only has a chance of success if witnesses can prove that it happened.

As well as the middle finger, it can also be an offence to verbally insult someone. 

READ ALSO: The German road signs that confuse foreigners

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