SHARE
COPY LINK

CRIME

Man found guilty of racial hatred jailed for running neo-Nazi website

A German court on Thursday sentenced a man to two and a half years in jail for running a banned neo-Nazi website, finding him guilty of inciting racial hatred.

Man found guilty of racial hatred jailed for running neo-Nazi website
One of the defendants at the beginning of the trial in Stuttgart. Photo: DPA

Judges in the western city of Stuttgart said the 29-year-old, identified only as Ralph K., who for several years ran the German-language “Altermedia Deutschland” site, “had led a criminal organization and propagated hate”.

Three co-defendants were convicted of contributing to the far-right platform and were handed suspended sentences between eight months and two years, national news agency DPA reported.

The German government shut down “Altermedia” on Holocaust Remembrance Day two years ago following a series of police raids.

Until then, “Altermedia” had been one of Germany's most popular online platforms for the far-right, attracting some five million visitors.

Prosecutors at the time said the site's content ranged from “incitement of violence against foreigners… to disparagement of people of other faiths and skin colours to Holocaust denial”.

It also included “banned Nazi greetings and slogans”, they said.

The website, hosted on servers in Russia, has been linked to US white supremacist and former Ku Klux Klan member David Duke.

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.

SHOW COMMENTS