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Political Manipulation and Informants: How the AfD Wants to Get Rid of the Judge Before the Trial on the “Extreme Right-Wing Suspicion”

A showdown is scheduled before the Higher Administrative Court in Münster, North Rhine-Westphalia on February 27th and 28th. The presiding judge Gerald Buck and the 18th senate of the court will be dealing with the question of whether the AfD can continue to be classified as an “extreme right-wing suspicion” by the Federal Office for the Protection of the Constitution. At least, if the party doesn’t push the judge out of office.

The AfD’s lawyers claim that a fair judgment cannot be expected from Buck. They elaborate their “concern of bias” on 20 pages and accuse Buck of acting “arbitrarily,” as reported by the “Süddeutsche Zeitung.” Furthermore, they argue that the Office for the Protection of the Constitution is already favored when it comes to, for example, deadline extensions, while requests from the AfD are narrowly rejected. The judge is “conducting a kind of secret procedure,” the AfD’s lawyers complain – that’s precisely why he should be removed.

Sensitive Issue: How many racist quotes are backed by informants within the AfD?

The chances of the lawyers getting their way are quite high. This is because the judiciary in North Rhine-Westphalia has so far made a small detour around a legally sensitive issue: thousands of racist and anti-Semitic quotes from the internet. The question that arises: Do these quotes reflect the spirit of the AfD, as claimed by the Office for the Protection of the Constitution, or are there also informants, in other words, AfD insiders commissioned by the Office for the Protection of the Constitution?

Since March 2022, the Office for the Protection of the Constitution has been allowed to commission such informants. According to the “Süddeutsche Zeitung,” the informants have collected around 10,000 pages of files since then. However, it is unclear which chat groups the Office for the Protection of the Constitution is involved in. “Due to the associated interference, among other things, with the right to a fair trial, there is arbitrary behavior,” the AfD’s lawyers complain.

Manipulation in Court? Explosive Suspicions Surrounding the Green NRW Minister of Justice

As if this weren’t problematic enough for the Office for the Protection of the Constitution, another problem arises: the suspicion that there was manipulation in the appointment of key judicial positions in North Rhine-Westphalia, as further reported by the “Süddeutsche Zeitung.”

The Minister of Justice in NRW is the Green politician Benjamin Limbach. Under the son of the former president of the Federal Constitutional Court, Jutta Limbach, the ministry became embroiled in a dispute with the Higher Administrative Court in Münster. It revolves around the question of whether Limbach interfered in the court’s personnel policy to promote his own favorites into influential positions.

Judge Gerald Buck is indirectly affected by this. In May 2023, the court presidency promoted him to his position in the 18th senate of the Higher Administrative Court in Münster. It was already foreseeable back then that the court would soon have to make decisions regarding the AfD.

However, Buck is only stepping in for the case as it is being led by the 5th senate. Cases related to political parties or intelligence services are usually led by the court president personally. However, due to the political disputes, there is currently no such president. According to the court’s allocation plan, this is why Buck gets involved – if he is allowed to exercise his office in the process.

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