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CRIME

Toy radio turned police scanner becomes Mickey Mouse operation

A Mickey Mouse toy included with the most recent edition of the Disney character’s comic book has made a mockery of German police, who are investigating reports that it picks up scanner dispatches.

Toy radio turned police scanner becomes Mickey Mouse operation
Photo: screenshot from www.micky-maus.de

“We’ve received reports and detectives are finding out whether it’s in violation of telecommunications law,” Hamburg police spokesperson Ulrike Sweden told the Hamburger Morgenpost.

The white mini-radio, about the size of two matchbooks, comes with issue 12 of the €3.20 Micky Maus comic book released on Monday, and officers have picked up several of the radios from newsstands to conduct tests.

Concerned parents in Hannover have also notified authorities that their children were picking up police chatter on the radios, which look similar to iPods. But a Hannover police spokesperson told the paper that officials believe they are dealing with a limited problem.

The comic book publisher Ehapa Verlag spokesperson Elke Schickedanz told the paper that the radio, manufactured in China, was “scrupulously tested at an institute for toy safety” and should only be able to tune into normal radio stations.

A statement on the publisher’s website assured readers on Friday that media reports are of “isolated cases.”

“Hence our request to Mickey Mouse readers: The radio is exclusively designed for listening to music. Everything else is not allowed,” the statement said.

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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