A far-left German extremist has been sentenced to three years in Hungarian prison almost a year after his involvement in a series of brutal beatings targeting alleged right-wing sympathizers in the capital city of Budapest.
The case, which garnered ample media attention in both Hungary and Germany, dates back to February of last year, when a group of Antifa extremists targeted nine people in Budapest — seriously injuring six. As Remix News reported at the time, video surveillance captured one of the attacks and showed the vicious assault in detail, including the suspects delivering hammer blows to the head of one of the individuals who was misidentified as a right-wing extremist. He was actually a tobacco store worker on his way to work.
The prosecutor in the case said that the 29-year-old convicted suspect was a co-founder of an “organization that sympathized with left-wing extremist ideology.” He is said to belong to the “Hammer Gang” surrounding the left-wing extremist Lina E., who was handed a five-year sentence for her role in leading a series of severely violent beatings of right-wing activists in Germany, often involving hammers and other blunt objects.
On the first day of his trial on Monday, the defendant confessed to partaking in the assaults in Budapest.
“I apologize to the court and the public prosecutor. I acknowledge my guilt and waive my rights in the proceedings,” said the defendant, according to the Hungarian newspaper Blikk.
Violent ‘Hammer gang’ Antifa group leader receives 5-year prison sentence, supporters riot in numerous German cities and promise ‘Day X’ as revenge
The leader of the group was sentenced to five years and three months
However, he is not the only suspect in the case, and others are currently in Hungarian custody or facing potential extradition to Hungary for their involvement in the attacks. In response, their parents are begging the authorities for mercy for their children, saying that Hungarian prison is too harsh and that they are facing “unreasonably high sentences” for their role in the attacks in comparison to Germany.
The Hungarian public prosecutor is allegedly seeking prison sentences of up to 24 years for some of the Antifa suspects.
Antifa member of infamous ‘Hammer Gang’ arrested in Germany, tied to brutal attacks in Hungary
The attackers will go on trial in Hungary
However, the Germans involved in the case may have a potential savior in the domestic spy agency, the Office for the Protection of the Constitution (BfV), with the agency allegedly offering suspects’ lawyers the chance to mediate the case. The BfV’s proposal is that if the suspects turn themselves in and confess to their crimes, their case will instead go to the Dresden Public Prosecutor’s Office and they will not be extradited to Hungary.
Any decision on extradition to Hungary will also first have to go through the Berlin Court of Appeals.
However, the Hungarian authorities may protest any move by German authorities to keep the suspects from serving justice in Hungary.
Antifa attacks innocents in Budapest
Hungarian police said the attackers in February of last year targeted mostly innocent bystanders — some of them foreign tourists and others locals — injuring at least seven of them, some of them severely. The Antifa attackers were present during the “Day of Honor,” a far-right event held annually in Budapest that commemorates a battle involving Hungarian and German soldiers during World War II against Red Army forces in Budapest.
In one of the attacks, seven or eight perpetrators attacked a group of three Polish citizens who had just left their cars and were going sightseeing. During the attacks, two of the Poles suffered serious fracture injuries, while their third companion escaped with bruises on his limbs and a laceration to his scalp.
Budapest Antifa hammer attacks were carried out by violent German Antifa leader known for torturing his victims, according to Hungarian and German police
Several other radical group members have been arrested, but Johann Guntermann, known as “Gucci,” is still at large
Police and the intelligence services are still looking for several of the presumed attackers, but six were arrested right after the attack. So far, only one arrested individual is Hungarian, one is Italian and the rest are German citizens, according to Hungarian news outlet Magyar Nemzet. Additional searches and arrests were made in Germany, and police say at least 14 suspects are still at large.
According to the public prosecutor’s office in Budapest, the Italian and the German accomplices already in custody are facing 11 years and three and a half years, respectively.