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Germany

Neo-Nazi Jailed for Bombing Plot

A German neo-Nazi was jailed for seven years on Wednesday after being convicted over a planned bombing attack against the Jewish community in Munich in 2003.

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Wiese was sentenced to seven years in prison

The judges in the Munich court decided that Martin Wiese, 29, was the ringleader of a plan to bomb a high-profile ceremony for the laying of the foundation stone of a new Jewish community center on Nov. 9, 2003.

The court found that Wiese was the head of a right-wing extremist terror organization known as Kameradschaft Süd (Comeradeship South) aimed at undermining the German democratic system.

The then German president Johannes Rau, Bavaria's state premier Edmund Stoiber and leading representatives of the Jewish community were among guests at the event but authorities uncovered the plot in time to thwart it.

Prosecutors said Wiese had long been active in far-right groups in Germany, has a Nazi swastika tattooed on his chest and signs letters with "Heil Hitler."

Accomplices sentenced

Three of Wiese's accomplices, aged between 22 and 28, were also given prison sentences at the conclusion of the five-month trial, which was conducted under high security. Their sentences ranged from two years and three months to five years and nine months.

Two of the accomplices had confessed to the court in March, sparking a furious reaction from Wiese.

Defense lawyers had claimed that Wiese should be jailed for a maximum of six years because no attack had taken place, but the prosecution had argued that planning for the plot was at a relatively advanced stage when it was uncovered. Explosives and firearms were discovered at the homes of the group's members.

The targeted ceremony marked the 65th anniversary of the start of the Nazi attacks on Jews in what became known as Kristallnacht, or the Night of Broken Glass.

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