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Shofar FTP Archive File: orgs/german/german-alternative/press/magdeburg-sentencing.0794


Archive/File: orgs/german/german-alternative/press ap.072294
Last-Modified: 1994/08/17

Copyright, 1994. The Associated Press. All rights reserved.

By LARRY THORSON, Associated Press Writer

   BERLIN (AP) -- Three young rightists were sentenced today to up to
3 1/2 years in prison for one of the most flagrant hate attacks this
year in Germany, a "hunt for foreigners" in the eastern city of
Magdeburg.

The juvenile court in Magdeburg imposed sentences longer than
prosecutors had requested in an attempt to deter repeats of the May 12
riot in which about 60 rightists chased foreigners through the city
center.

   In the western German city of Koblenz, prosecutors announced
charges against 18 rightists accused of supporting the
ultra-nationalist German Alternative, a group declared illegal in
December 1992.

   Authorities say bans of such groups and heightened police action
have helped reduce the number of violent rightist attacks on
foreigners, refugees and others.  Attacks initially rose steeply after
German reunification in 1990.

   But police were criticized for taking six hours to quell the
Magdeburg riots, which unleashed a wave of condemnation and
comparisons to pre-World War II Nazi thuggery.

   The surging mob of rightists in Magdeburg, a city of 270,000 about
75 miles west of Berlin, did not cause any serious injuries as they
chased mostly African residents of a refugee shelter.

   But at least three rioters suffered knife wounds when they tangled
with Turkish waiters at a popular cafe where the foreigners found
refuge.

   Magedeburg juvenile court judge Evelyn Majstrak sentenced one of
the riot leaders, Steve Abicht, 20, to 3 1/2 years in prison, a year
longer than the prosecution had requested.  The defendant, with a long
record of violence, was convicted of aggravated battery.

   The court gave a three-year sentence to Stefan Werner, 19, and 2
1/2 years to Marco Dlugosch, 20, for the same charge.

  The trial was the first for a series of young rightists accused in
the attack.  Some are also under investigation for later violence and
neo-Nazi actions.



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