ZDF broadcast: After Böhmermann action: investigations against police officers

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    How do police departments react to obviously criminally relevant hate messages on the Internet? The “ZDF Magazin Royale” has investigated the question. The action now has consequences for some officials.

    A Böhmermann experiment with the police forces of 16 countries has consequences for officials in some authorities. In Bremen, the public prosecutor’s office is investigating a police officer on suspicion of frustration.

    The background is an action of the program “ZDF Magazin Royale” by the satirist Jan Böhmermann, as a spokesman for the public prosecutor said on Saturday. Internal investigations were also launched in Saxony-Anhalt. Since “the specific allegations became known in the last week”, an officer at the police station has been investigated on suspicion of evading criminal prosecution, the Magdeburg Police Inspectorate announced on Saturday. On Friday evening, the episode of “ZDF Magazin Royale” with the campaign was put online and also broadcast on TV.

    Last summer, the editors behind moderator Böhmermann reported seven obviously criminally relevant hate messages to police departments in all 16 federal states and later described the mostly sluggish course of the investigation. Death threats were displayed, as were anti-Semitic content and anti-constitutional, right-wing extremist symbols. In some federal states, the ads were not even accepted.

    In Bremen, the police officer is said to have recorded the complaint, but only recorded it in the system two months later when the complainants asked. Now it must be checked why the matter was processed late, said the spokesman for the public prosecutor in Bremen. The police officer concerned was transferred to the office, as the Bremen police had already announced on Tuesday. At this time, the Böhmermann research was not yet public knowledge.

    In Saxony-Anhalt, a message from the Magdeburg police said: “According to current knowledge, no criminal complaint was received here at the time.” The matter is being investigated thoroughly and comprehensively. The investigation into the specific case continued, it said.

    There were also reactions to the research from other countries – for example, there was praise for the police in Hesse on the show. “Everything was done in eleven minutes. (…) It can be that easy,” summed up the police testers from “ZDF Magazin Royale”. At least one suspect has been charged there. The Hessian police saw themselves confirmed. “Since the murder of District President Walter Lübcke at the latest, we have been taking the fight against hatred and hate speech on the Internet very seriously,” said a spokesman for the Hessian Ministry of the Interior on Saturday.