German police raided over 30 homes across four states on Tuesday in a crackdown on far-right extremists and neo-Nazi supporters. More than 20 people were arrested in the dawn swoops.
Police said they had arrested 24 people in Rhineland-Palatinate, North Rhine-Westphalia, Thuringia and Baden-Württemberg states.
The investigation was focused on the banned group "Aktionsbüro Mittelrhein," as well as on members of the far-right National Democratic Party (NPD).
"Nineteen of the accused were arrested for membership of a criminal organization, three for supporting a criminal organization and two for participating in a serious breach of the peace," the prosecutors said.
According to prosecutors, the "Aktionsbüro Mittelrhein" gathered information about political opponents and then "outed" them publicly in a bid to intimidate them.
"All participants were aware that a climate of hate was being created and fears were being stoked," the statement added.
"Another area of activity was the openly violent acts against members of the left-wing scene, both locally and further afield," added the prosecutors.
Investigators said there were no known connections between those detained and the neo-Nazi cell National Socialist Underground, which was believed to have been behind the murder of 10 people, mostly of Turkish origin, in a case that shocked the nation.
dfm/rc (AFP, dpa)