Defence accepts jail for neo-Nazi Martin Wiese
3 May 2005, MUNICH - The defence lawyer for a 29-year-old German neo- Nazi who collected explosives and thought of bombing a synagogue told a Munich court on Tuesday the defence would accept up to six years' jail.
3 May 2005
MUNICH - The defence lawyer for a 29-year-old German neo- Nazi who collected explosives and thought of bombing a synagogue told a Munich court on Tuesday the defence would accept up to six years' jail.
The previous day, prosecutors called for Martin Wiese to be sent to prison for eight years for setting up a terrorist organisation. Wiese and three lieutenants were arrested by Munich police before they could conduct any attacks.
Defence counsel Guenther Herzogenrath-Amelung asserted that Wiese had never advanced to "concretely planning" a bomb blast in 2003 at the Munich building site for a Jewish community centre and synagogue that have since been built.
"My client is willing to pay the price, but he's not willing to be convicted as a terrorist," said the lawyer, asking for the terrorism charge to be dropped and for Wiese to be convicted on explosives charges instead.
Accumulating weapons and explosives had been "enormously stupid" and Wiese would accept jail for that.
The court has heard how the Wiese group, the Kameradschaft Sued, had dreamed of overthrowing the German government and establishing a dictatorship modelled on Adolf Hitler's. Some of its members were teenagers still at school and have already been convicted.
The Wiese group is the first to be prosecuted under German terrorism legislation. Previously, neo-Nazis have been convicted of extreme violence and sedition, but not of being terrorists.
The lawyer for a second defendant also asked on Tuesday for a conviction on explosives charges only, but counsel for the third and fourth defendants said they admitted they were guilty of right-wing terrorism and hoped cooperation would lead to a lesser sentence.
Subject: German news