The Berlin Volunteer Reserve Police has for years hired known neo-Nazi activists, a top municipal official and a spokesman for a far-right group have confirmed.
The ultrarightists apparently joined the force, known as the FPR, in order to get select information and practice using arms.
The information was confirmed here Saturday by Armin Jaeger, a top official of Berlin’s Interior Department, and by Thomas Salomon, the Berlin spokesman of the National Democratic Party, a right-wing group.
“We have a number of men within the FPR,” Salomon said. “We believe this is important and helpful in protecting us from police raids and in helping to promote political goals intended to serve the public’s interest.”
Last week, five members of the FPR were arrested for having deliberately infiltrated the force for political reasons. The arrests were initially kept secret to avoid embarrassing the authorities.
Jaeger acknowledged that the investigation’s conclusion had been kept secret but said the department resolved to act swiftly.
He said that two high-ranking officials were probably responsible for deliberately hiring the extremists and may face suspension or even dismissal.
The Interior Department has ordered a thorough examination into the records of all FPR members, Jaeger reported. He said results will be available in about a week and action will be taken promptly to clear the force of extreme right elements.
The Archive of the Jewish Telegraphic Agency includes articles published from 1923 to 2008. Archive stories reflect the journalistic standards and practices of the time they were published.