German police search homes in raid on far-right

Reuters/July 27, 2011

Stuttgart, Germany - Police raided 21 homes and properties linked to suspected right-wing extremists in southern Germany Wednesday, the prosecutor's office in the state capital Stuttgart said.

The investigation focused on the suspected formation of a criminal organization as well as weapons violations, but was not linked to last Friday's bombing and shooting spree carried out in Norway by a far-right extremist, the office said.

Some 140 police officers took part in the raid in Baden-Wuerttemberg state, seizing weapons, ammunition, drugs and computers from 18 people involved with a group known as "Standarte Wuerrttemberg."

The group, which aims to expel all foreigners from Germany, has been under investigation since March, prosecutors said.

Laws banning far right groups are particularly strict in Germany, where any propaganda materials referring to the Nazi Party are illegal.

(Reporting by Hendrik Sackmann, writing by Brian Rohan; Editing by Elizabeth Fullerton)

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