German police charged over Nazi chats, possessing explosives

BERLIN (AP) — Prosecutors in Germany have accused two brothers who worked as police officers in the central state of Hesse of spreading racist views on instant messaging apps, German news agency dpa reported Thursday.

The brothers, ages 46 and 37, were indicted on suspicion of incitement and breaching firearms laws.

Frankfurt prosecutors accuse the older man of posting pictures of Adolf Hitler and racist messages about dark-skinned people and Muslims to a WhatsApp group. He is also accused of illegally possessing explosives, firearms and Nazi memorabilia.

The suspect, who wasn’t named, has been suspended from police duty.

His younger brother, who left the police force in western Hesse voluntarily, has been charged with displaying symbols of forbidden organizations, leaking confidential police information and breaking firearms laws.

Anti-racism campaigners have called for a thorough investigation into the prevalence of far-right views among German police. Interior Minister Horst Seehofer, the country’s top security official, has rejected the idea that there is a “structural” problem with racism in the police, but agreed last year to commission a broader study that includes examining extremist views in the force.

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