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German Supreme Court Orders New Trial in Museum Arson Case

Germany’s Supreme Court has ordered the retrial of two neo-Nazis accused of setting fire to the Jewish museum at the site of the former Sachsenhausen concentration camp.

The museum, located in a former camp barracks, was totally destroyed in a September 1992 arson attack.

The Potsdam state court released the two last October, citing a lack of sufficient evidence against them.

But the Supreme Court last week ordered a retrial, saying the judges in the lower court had not paid sufficient attention to the conflicting testimonies of the defendants.

The defendants were identified only as a student, 22, of Berlin, and a railway official, 24, of Prenzlau in eastern Germany.

In a related development, German police have uncovered what they described as the biggest discovery in recent years of weapons and explosives belonging to right-wing radicals.

The find came as a result of help provided by a former neo-Nazi activist.

According to federal prosecutors, Peter Naumann, 42, led police to eight weapons depots last week as part of an apparent bargain to obtain a lenient sentence for charges leveled again him.

Naumann, a member of a German right-wing group for the past 10 years, also had good contacts with Austrian rightists. A chemical engineer, he was considered a bomb expert for German neo-Nazi groups.