New German spy fear

It was announced in the German press on 16 August that the BfV (Bundesamt für Verfassungsschutz – the German Security Service) is to investigate its former head Hans-Georg Maaßen, 60, over his links to neo-Nazi groups. German police have been requested to hand over their files on the matter to the BfV. He ran the BfV from 2012 to 2018. He took early retirement following rumours about his links with neo-Nazi groups. It appears that there may now be new evidence that requires investigation and there is a suggestion that this is linked to Federal Crime Office’s current investigation into the Reichsburger (Citizens of the Reich) movement. According to Bild, the German newspaper, an individual who was part of the movement called Maaßen for help after Reichsburger addresses were raided by police last year. This call was intercepted by the security agencies and that individual is now understood to be helping the authorities. Maaßen is a lawyer by profession and denies everything. After retirement, he ran as a candidate in Thrungia for the CDU party where he was known for his strong anti-immigrant positions. Following recent arrests and the Carsten Linke case that is still awaiting trial, this is another blow to the German intelligence services from the hard right.

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