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Germany's far-left fugitives suspected in more crimes

Three fugitives of Germany's far-left Red Army Faction have been blamed for at least six supermarket heists including the most recent one in May. Police had earlier linked the militants to money transporter attacks.

Authorities now believe that Ernst-Volker Staub, Daniela Klette and Burkhard Garweg (pictured left to right) have been involved in more crimes than previously thought.

The Red Army Faction (RAF) militants have been

at large for decades

and were blamed mostly for attacks on money vans.

The RAF was active in the 1970s and 80s and has been charged with bombings, kidnappings and killings.

"The investigations… show that the suspects in the money transporter attacks… could also have carried out the attacks at supermarket cash offices," the prosecutors in Germany's northern state of Lower Saxony said.

"The culprits are believed to be short of money, hence further attacks cannot be ruled out," they warned.

Authorities said the fugitives stole between 46,000 and 100,000 euros ($52,200-$113,500) in two heists, except for the most recent one on May 7, when they escaped with only a guard's firearm in their possession.

Police said they had drawn a connection between six robberies across Lower Saxony and Schleswig-Holstein states due to a similar modus operandi over the past five years.

Staub, 61, Garweg, 47, and Klette 57, are believed to be hiding in Germany or in neighboring countries. The security officials recently traced a telephone call made to a car-seller from the Netherlands believed to be from one of the fugitives.

The anti-capitalist RAF, also known as the Baader-Meinhof gang, emerged out of the radicalized fringe of the 1960s student protest movement.

The group, which had links to several Middle Eastern militant organizations, declared itself disbanded in 1998.

Staub, Garweg and Klette are also wanted in a 1993 bomb attack against an under-construction prison in Hesse state.

shs/kms (AFP, dpa)

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