Arrests in desecration of German Jewish cemetery


Four young men are under arrest for vandalizing a historic Jewish cemetery in the southern German town of Ihringen/Kaiserstuhl.

The four, ranging in age from 15 to 28, have apparent right-wing extremist connections. They were arrested Aug. 16, and three confessed the next day.

The arrests are unusual, in that most crimes of this sort remain unresolved. In this case, an eight-person team was set up to investigate, and a citizens group pressed local and state authorities to take the case seriously.

The incident occurred the night of Aug.11, when more than 70 of the 200 gravestones at the cemetery were knocked off their pedestals. The same cemetery was vandalized in 1990 and 1991, and, as is common, the perpetrators were never found.

Police are still investigating the current crime, and the State Criminal Department said it is committed to clearing up the unsolved cases from 1990 and 1991.

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