05/17/2013 12:08 PM

Neo-Nazi Trial

Excrement Smeared on Lawyer's Office Door

Excrement and urine have been splattered on the Munich office of a lawyer representing plaintiffs in Germany's biggest neo-Nazi trial. Police suspect far-right extremists were behind the incident, just one of several apparently intended to intimidate anti-racist and immigrant groups as the trial gets underway.

Since the landmark trial of neo-Nazi Beate Zschäpe began this month, a number of anti-extremist groups have been the target of far-right attacks, a media report said on Friday. Only now, the attempts at intimidation have taken a decidedly unsavory new tone, with right-wing extremists suspected of smearing a lawyer's office with fecal matter and urine.

The door of the Munich office, which belongs to a lawyer representing family members of a victim of the neo-Nazi terrorist cell, the National Socialist Underground (NSU), was "extensively" daubed with excrement and urine on Monday morning, according to daily Süddeutsche Zeitung.

"It is unlikely that this is a coincidence," the paper wrote.

A housing project in Westend -- the same district of the Bavarian capital where the NSU committed one of its 10 alleged murders -- and the office of refugee counselling service were among other places to have been vandalized a total of seven times with things like neo-Nazi slogans and eggings, the paper said. The latest incident occurred on Thursday night, when the home of anti-racist activists was pelted with paint bombs.

Police suspect that right-wing extremists are behind the attacks, but are not currently investigating any individuals. "They want us to feel unsafe," one of the activists told the paper. "We won't allow ourselves to be intimidated."

The NSU trial, the biggest Germany has seen in decades, has sharpened the focus on the problem of neo-Nazi activity in the country. Beate Zschäpe, the last surviving member of the terrorist cell, is alleged to have helped form the neo-Nazi group with Uwe Mundlos and Uwe Böhnhardt, who both committed suicide after a botched bank robbery in November 2011. Zschäpe was allegedly complicit in the racially motivated killing of eight men of Turkish descent, one Greek man and a German policewoman between 2000 and 2007. She also allegedly took part in orchestrating a 2004 bomb attack that injured 22 in a district of Cologne in which many Turks live.

Four alleged accomplices are on trial with Zschäpe, who faces a possible life sentence.

-- kla


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