BERLIN — German police early Wednesday morning raided homes belonging to members of the so-called Last Generation climate activist group across the country, according to local authorities.
Authorities are investigating allegations that a total of seven defendants, aged 22 to 38, formed and supported a criminal organization, according to a statement from the Bavarian State Criminal Police Office, which is responsible for the case.
The investigators accuse the defendants of having collected a total of €1.4 million via a fundraising campaign, which the Last Generation is said to have used mainly to commit crimes. According to the statement, the aim of the raids was to uncover information about the group’s structure and financing.
Two of the suspects are alleged to have planned criminal acts themselves, as they are accused of trying to sabotage an oil pipeline from Trieste in Italy to Ingolstadt in Germany last April.
The climate activists reacted by writing on Twitter, “Raid lobby structures and seize government fossil fuel funds — When? Nationwide raid. #CompletelyCrazy.”
In doing so, they used the language of German Chancellor Olaf Scholz, who on Monday called the Last Generation’s controversial actions “completely crazy.”
According to the authorities, the proceedings were initiated “as a result of numerous criminal complaints received from the public since the middle of 2022.”
Officials raided 15 properties across Germany. In addition to Bavaria, searches were carried out in Berlin, Hamburg, Hesse, Saxony, Saxony-Anhalt and Schleswig-Holstein. Officials enforced a property arrest and two seizures of accounts.
A spokesperson for the Bavarian State Criminal Police Office told POLITICO that authorities also took the activists’ website offline.