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Regional Court in Frankfurt am Main: Several family members found guilty

Photo: Fredrik von Erichsen / dpa

The Regional Court of Frankfurt am Main has sentenced a former Bundeswehr soldier to seven years in prison for right-wing radical coup plans. The man's father and brother were sentenced to five and a half years in prison and three years and nine months in juvenile detention for aiding and abetting and violating the War Weapons Control Act, a court spokesman said.

The former soldier was convicted of preparing a serious act of violence endangering the state, violations of the Weapons and War Weapons Control Act, assault and insulting his ex-girlfriend. The woman's criminal complaint had led to the discovery of the soldier, who was stationed in Pfullendorf as a corporal at the time, in February 2021.

Extensive weapons cache excavated

The court considered it proven that the 23-year-old former soldier had planned to set up a combat organization based on the National Socialist model out of a right-wing extremist attitude in order to conquer first Germany and later the whole world using weapons and explosives. Migrants and refugees should be killed. The man wanted to implement the plan from July 2020 at the latest.

In February 2021, the police had dug up an extensive warehouse of war weapons and ammunition in the family's home in Glashütten (Hochtaunus district). The trial against the defendants has been underway since June last year.

Long-standing contacts with right-wing extremist circles

In court, the father had justified the stocks of weapons and ammunition – including hand grenades and explosives – with his "passion for collecting". The brother stated that he had not noticed the criminal activities of his relatives.

According to the court, however, the defendants had been in contact with right-wing extremist circles since 2016 and made plans for an armed coup. Fixed structures and right-wing networks were recognizable, said the presiding judge.

The verdict is not yet final. In terms of sentencing, the Trial Chamber exceeded the requests of the public prosecutor's office. The defense lawyers had also demanded lesser sentences.

Reference: 6160 Js 209363/21