Police seize discs from far-right party in Germany

Other News Materials 8 February 2008 23:16 (UTC +04:00)

( dpa ) - Berlin police who searched the national office of Germany's main far-right group, the National Democratic Party (NPD), said Friday they seized digital music suspected of breaking German laws against Nazis.

The 50 recordings appeared to be seditious, and a separate inquiry had been opened into distributing anti-democratic propaganda.

Police also seized an unauthorized electro-shock weapon during the nine-hour hunt Thursday of the suburban Berlin offices, which have been violently attacked by leftist groups in the past.

German authorities have sought various ways to close down the party, which has no seats in the federal parliament but has seats in two eastern German states.

The national treasurer, Erwin Kemna, 57, was remanded in custody Friday in his home town, Muenster. He is accused of misappropriating funds from the party, which receives automatic government subsidies based on its voter support.

A prosecutions spokesman, Wolfgang Schweer, said Kemna confirmed payments to himself but asserted these were repayments of money he had earlier lent to the party or of cash loans by supporters.

He is alleged to have taken 627,000 euros (909,000 dollars) to bolster the balance sheet of his fitted-kitchens company.

An NPD spokesman voiced concern Friday that the party might be penalized for accounting irregularities by the treasurer. He said, "Our financial position has been perilous since the start of 2007."

The NDP denies it is Nazi, but its nationalist, anti-foreigner message and its outreach to overtly neo-Nazi groups have made it a pariah for Germany's mainstream parties.