Major raid: Who the prominent defendants are - and what is known about the alleged Reich citizen network

A year after the nationwide raid against an alleged network of Reich citizens, the federal prosecutor's office has brought charges against 26 alleged members and one alleged supporter.

Major raid: Who the prominent defendants are - and what is known about the alleged Reich citizen network

A year after the nationwide raid against an alleged network of Reich citizens, the federal prosecutor's office has brought charges against 26 alleged members and one alleged supporter. According to information on Tuesday, the Karlsruhe authorities accuse them of membership or support of a terrorist organization and of preparing a treasonous enterprise. Three higher regional courts are to deal with the charges.

The most important questions and answers at a glance.

According to the Federal Prosecutor's Office, the organization founded at the end of July 2021 was said to have had the goal of overcoming the state order in Germany and replacing it with its own form of government, which it had roughly developed, with Reuss as provisional head.

The alleged members are said not to have shied away from violence. The network is said to have planned to send armed people to the Bundestag in order to have politicians arrested. According to the Federal Prosecutor's Office, they were aware that the planned takeover of power would result in deaths.

The federal prosecutor's office brought charges against a total of 27 people. Most of them are accused of membership in a terrorist organization, and in some cases of founding one. They were also charged with preparing a treasonous enterprise.

Reuss and the former Bundeswehr officer Rüdiger von P. are considered the ringleaders. The Federal Prosecutor's Office also accuses some of the accused of weapons offenses or of preparing a serious act of violence that endangers the state.

A man, Markus L., was also charged with attempted murder and grievous bodily harm. He is said to have fired specifically at police officers during the search of his apartment in Reutlingen. The Russian Vitalia B. - the only non-German among the accused - is said to have put Reuß in touch with the Russian Consulate General in Leipzig. She is accused of aiding and abetting.

The accused are said to believe conspiracy myths from the Reichsbürger and QAnon movements and reject the free-democratic basic order. According to the allegations, they are convinced that Germany is secretly ruled by a so-called deep state.

Apparently they expected an attack on Germany's highest institutions on "Day X" by a secret society that would consist of foreign governments, armed forces and secret services. Her own organization was then supposed to eliminate institutions and officials at the federal state, district and municipal levels.

It is said to have had a central body, the so-called council. According to the Federal Prosecutor's Office, this was made up of various departments, similar to a government cabinet. The group is said to have envisioned the council as a transitional government. In addition, there is said to have been a military wing that was supposed to enforce the planned takeover of power by force of arms.

According to the allegations, the council was supposed to negotiate the new state order in Germany with the Allied victorious powers of the Second World War. From the group's perspective, the only central contact was Russia.

According to the Federal Prosecutor's Office, a Germany-wide system of 286 so-called homeland security companies, militarily organized associations, was being set up. At several recruiting events, attempts are said to have been made to recruit active or former members of the police or armed forces for the group. So-called enemy lists were also created.

Members of the group explored Bundestag properties, and former MP Malsack-Winkemann provided information about parliamentary operations. The alleged ringleaders Reuss and von P. are said to have tried to meet Russian representatives in Slovakia. Reuss also appeared at the Consulate General in Leipzig. According to the Federal Prosecutor's Office, it is still unclear how Russia reacted.

The network is said to have had around half a million euros at its disposal and access to a "massive arsenal" of around 380 firearms, almost 350 cutting and stabbing weapons and almost 500 other weapons. Shooting training is said to have taken place.

The higher regional courts in Frankfurt am Main, Stuttgart and Munich decide on the charges. The courts in Frankfurt and Munich have already announced that it usually takes a few months to decide whether the so-called main proceedings will be opened.

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