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Neo-Nazi to face child sex abuse charges

Far-right extremist and former informant for the security services Tino Brandt will face charges of serious sexual abuse of children.

Neo-Nazi to face child sex abuse charges
File photo of TIno Brandt being arrested in 1995. Photo: DPA

State prosecutors in Gera, Thuringia, said that Brandt, 39, would answer 157 charges for acts that took place between 2011 and 2014.

“This means that he himself had sexual contact with children and young people,” a spokesman for the prosecutor's office said.

Brandt is accused of having supplied minors to adults for sex in exchange for money in 45 cases.

As leader of the “Thuringia Homeland Defence” group, Brandt had contact with the National Socialist Underground members Uwe Mundlos, Uwe Böhnhardt and Beate Zschäpe before they began their serial murders.

News of the charges against Brandt came just one day after his handler from the Office for Constitutional Protection (Verfassungsschutz) had given evidence at Zschäpe's trial.

Prosecutors said that there was no connection to his political opinions in the present charges.

They added that Brandt, who has been in custody since June during the investigation, had co-operated with the investigation and admitted to some of the allegations.

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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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