German police detain man for using neo-Nazi acronym during three-year hate mail campaign

Frankfurt’s prosecutor general announced on Tuesday that a 53-year-old man had been arrested for using the acronym of a neo-Nazi gang to send hate mail to politicians during a three-year campaign.

The unnamed suspect, who had previously been prosecuted for crimes linked to his far-right views, was arrested over allegations he was behind hateful messages sent to both regional and national politicians, and a Turkish-German lawyer, using the name ‘NSU 2.0’, in a reference to the underground group National Socialist (NSU).

The authorities believe dozens of individuals and organization across Austria and Germany had received around 100 letters from the suspect, who is thought to have found their data in online forums or through official documentation.

The police haven’t yet released his name, due to privacy concerns while the prosecution is ongoing.

Germany’s Interior Minister, Horst Seehofer, is to hold a press conference on Tuesday to discuss the government’s efforts to tackle far-right extremism in the country, as well as politically motivated crimes, following the death of a pro-immigration regional governor, Walter Lubcke, in 2019.

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NSU was a German neo-Nazi terrorist group that was responsible for a number of crimes, including the murder of 10 people, two bombings, and numerous bank robberies between 2000 and 2007. 

Three individuals were linked to the group: Uwe Bohnhardt and Uwe Mundlos, who are now dead, and Beate Zschape, who is serving a life sentence, having been found guilty of 10 counts of murder, membership of a terrorist organization, and arson in July 2018.

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