The police and prosecutors go against the last one generation before. Apartments and business premises in seven federal states were searched, and a website and accounts were confiscated. Sharp criticism comes from climate activists.
With a large-scale raid, the police and public prosecutors took action against the climate protection group Last Generation on Wednesday. Around 170 officers searched 15 apartments and business premises in seven federal states from the early morning, as announced by the Munich public prosecutor and the Bavarian State Criminal Police Office. The charge is to form or support a criminal organization.
It is determined against seven suspects who are between 22 and 38 years old. Initially, there were no arrests. According to the investigators, two of the suspects are suspected of having tried to sabotage the Trieste-Ingolstadt oil pipeline in April 2022.
According to the public prosecutor’s office, the investigations and searches are based on numerous criminal charges. The group regularly draws attention to the fatal consequences of global warming with sit-ins and actions in museums. The members often stick to it – on streets or on works of art.
Climate protection activists reacted with sharp criticism. The group Ende Gelände criticized on Twitter that there were raids on those “who warn about the climate crisis and not on those who are responsible for it”. The Last Generation itself asked on Twitter when lobby structures would be raided and “fossil government funds” confiscated.
Last generation is said to have collected donations and used them for crimes
According to the police and the Attorney General, the main allegation in connection with the searches is that the accused organized a fundraising campaign to finance further crimes for the last generation and thus collected at least 1.4 million euros. According to previous findings, this money was “predominantly also used for committing other crimes”. Where the money came from is the subject of the investigation. The police did not initially say how much of it was confiscated. The aim of the searches was also “to find evidence of the membership structure,” it said.
There were searches in seven federal states, specifically in Hesse in the Fulda district, in Hamburg, Saxony-Anhalt (Magdeburg), Saxony (Dresden), Bavaria (Augsburg and Munich), Berlin and in the Segeberg district in Schleswig-Holstein. According to initial information, the operations were peaceful. The group’s website was also confiscated and shut down by order of the public prosecutor’s office.
In the past few weeks, the environment for the activists had become extremely rough. Tired motorists often punched and kicked the protesters and roughly dragged them off the street, and the Potsdam Regional Court confirmed the initial suspicion that the group could be a criminal organization for the first time. Chancellor Olaf Scholz was also extremely critical this week and called the group’s sticking actions “completely crazy”.
Last generation demand speed limit and 9-euro ticket
The activists initially called for a “food save law” against food waste. The current demands are 100 km/h on motorways and a permanent 9-euro ticket for public transport.
The investigations are based at the Bavarian Central Office for Combating Extremism and Terrorism. However, a spokesman for the Munich Public Prosecutor’s Office emphasized that this does not mean that the last generation is classified as extremist or terrorist. “Based on the current state of investigation, we assume that this is a criminal organization – mind you, not a terrorist one,” said the spokesman. We want this to be checked in court.
The German police union welcomed the searches. “The judiciary is taking action, that’s the right signal from a defensive constitutional state,” said union boss Rainer Wendt in Berlin.
The deputy chairman of the left, Lorenz Gösta Beutin, called the raids completely exaggerated. The people who counted themselves among the so-called last generation relied on peaceful civil disobedience to draw attention to the climate catastrophe and the failure of the federal government.
I have been working in the news industry for over 6 years, first as a reporter and now as an editor. I have covered politics extensively, and my work has appeared in major newspapers and online news outlets around the world. In addition to my writing, I also contribute regularly to 24 Hours World.