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Germany

Chile Seizes German 'Dignity Colony'

A Chilean court seized the so-called Dignity Colony, an enclave of German speakers once led by a former German army nurse accused of child molesting and the disappearance of opponents to Chile's military regime, a prosecutor said Friday. "No more will there be a state-within-a-state," said Clara Szczaranski, chairman of the Council of State. The colony was founded in 1961 by Paul Schaefer, who has been in jail for five months, on orders of a judge and charged with molesting a score of children as well as collaboration in the disappearances of victims of Chile's military dictatorship under Augusto Pinochet, from 1973 to 1990. The 13,000-hectare (32,000-acre) mountain resort, 350 kilometers (215 miles) south of Santiago, is home to about 300 refugees from Nazi Germany. The property has a hospital and an airport. "The colony has a long criminal history and for us that is a long-standing criminal organization," said Szczaranski, who has the power to prosecute cases in the interests of the state. "We have seized this property so that conspirators cannot make use of it to commit further criminal activity," she said.