The Reichsbürger file: Three ex-soldiers were central players in the alleged Reichsbürger terrorists around Prince Reuss

Three former Bundeswehr soldiers played in the alleged Reichsbürger terrorist group around Henry XIII.

The Reichsbürger file: Three ex-soldiers were central players in the alleged Reichsbürger terrorists around Prince Reuss

Three former Bundeswehr soldiers played in the alleged Reichsbürger terrorist group around Henry XIII. Prince Reuss plays a central role. According to research by Stern and RTL, as ringleaders or founders, they are said to have not only exerted greater influence on the entire group and its plans than was previously publicly known, but also significantly earlier.

Last December, the Federal Prosecutor General charged 27 members of Prince Reuss' group with forming, membership or supporting a terrorist organization that is said to have prepared the overthrow of the federal government. However, Prince Reuss only joined the group months after it was founded; according to the indictment, he is not one of the six alleged founders. According to research by Stern and RTL, central initiatives came from three veterans: the former commander of the 251 Paratrooper Battalion, Rüdiger von Pescatore, the former Colonel Maximilian Eder and the former Paratrooper Peter Wörner.

Pescatore is accused of being a ringleader. Eder and Wörner as founders are also said to have been key forces behind plans to attack the Bundestag. In addition, Pescatore and Wörner are said to have started planning for a so-called "New German Army" much earlier and have therefore progressed further than was previously publicly known. The Federal Prosecutor General dates the founding of the alleged terrorist group to July 29, 2021. According to Stern and RTL, an email exchange shows that Rüdiger von Pescatore and Peter Wörner spoke as early as October 2020 about re-creating “our empire,” “a true state again with a real army".

They are said to have started building their own military by summer 2022 at the latest. Accordingly, they are said to have set up a "military command staff" for the planned "New German Army" with - according to an internal contact list - around 20 members. They are also said to have come a long way with the formation of some of the 286 planned regional homeland security companies. The Federal Prosecutor's Office has several dozen permanent members in two associations in Baden-Württemberg and Thuringia alone.

None of the three defendants wanted to comment on the allegations made by the Federal Prosecutor General and the research by Stern and RTL. Her lawyers left questions unanswered. A spokeswoman for the Federal Prosecutor General also did not want to comment, citing the ongoing proceedings.

The research team on the Reich citizen complex: Vicky Bargel, David Holzapfel, Tina Kaiser, Birte Meier, Marc Neller, Uli Rauss, Oliver Schröm. Verification: Moritz Dickentmann, Hildegard Frilling, Tobias Hamelmann, Michael Lehmann-Morgenthal, Dirk Liedtke.

Transparency note: The star is part of RTL Deutschland.

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