Zeitungswissen nur

Only newspaper knowledge.

After investigating N.S.A. activities for several months, German federal public prosecutor Harald Range is said to be considering starting no prosecutions, neither for mass surveillance of all Germans nor for surveillance of Angela Merkel’s phones, because his office has neither documents nor witness testimony, “only newspaper knowledge” of the N.S.A.’s violation of German criminal law. Presumably requests for judicial assistance [Rechtshilfeersuche, letters rogatory] to U.S. authorities would remain unanswered. Spiegel, which broke the story of the N.S.A.’s years of listening to the chancellor’s cell phone, cited source protection and refused to hand over related evidence from the Snowden trove.

Süddeutsche Zeitung said Mr. Range’s deciding not to prosecute would upset some people in the federal government and in his own office.

The federal government is said to have sent Mr. Range an early signal that he had independence to investigate freely in this matter, when Justice Minister Heiko Maas and Foreign Minister Frank-Walter Steinmeier agreed not to stop any investigations for foreign policy reasons.

S.P.D. and Green party politicians said they were upset by the decision to quit. The C.D.U. seemed to support it, saying they thought the matter should be dealt with by the Bundestag’s N.S.A. investigation committee and not by the federal prosecutor in Karlsruhe.

Update on 03 Jun 2014: The Süddeutsche Zeitung, NDR and WDR have heard that the decision was altered: Federal Prosecutor Range still will not investigate the U.S.’s massive spying but will do an initial investigation of their bugging of the chancellor’s phones. He is seeking the whistleblowers in his offices.

Update on 05 Jun 2014: What the federal prosecutor is investigating, geheimdienstlicher Agententätigkeit or “secret agent activity,” has a statute of limitations in Germany of five years.

Update on 04 Jul 2014: The federal prosecutor in Karlsruhe is investigating a U.S. spy caught in Germany’s foreign intelligence service.

Update on 09 Jul 2014: The federal prosecutor in Karlsruhe is investigating a U.S. spy caught in Germany’s defense ministry.

(TSIGHT oongs VISS en   noor.)

Festnahmeersuchen

Arrest request.

Edward Snowden cannot apply for German asylum before entering German territory. Members of the government could then issue him an Aufenthaltserlaubnis but it might not prevent his deportation to the U.S.A., because that country prudently filed a Festnahmeersuchen [“(intergovernmental) arrest request”] with Germany last summer. There are deportation agreements [Auslieferungsabkommen] between the E.U., Germany and the U.S.; to prevent deportation under those agreements an “obstacle reason” or estoppel [Hinderungsgrund] must be cited, “for example, that Germany considers the deed he is accused of to be a political crime,” said Frank Bräutigam, ARD law reporter, who added that the decision or “last word” lies with the Justice Ministry, of course in coordination with the entire cabinet. The Justice Ministry would have to make a clear statement that “Germany will not deport him.” Heribert Prantl wrote in Süddeutsche.de that the Interior Ministry is responsible for issuing Mr. Snowden’s Aufenthaltserlaubnis, but the courts and Justice Ministry are responsible for the more important question of deportation.

Bundestag member Petra Pau (Leftists; she appeared to do a great job in the parliamentary committee investigating the investigations of the neonazi serial killers) said on Nov. 1 that she could not recommend that Mr. Snowden travel to Germany under current circumstances, “because at the moment I see no one who can guarantee his safety.” Süddeutsche.de’s Heribert Prantl reminded his readers of the story of reformer Jan Hus in 1414 C.E., who received a letter of safe conduct, “sicheres Geleit,” from the Holy Roman Emperor yet was burned at the stake as a heretic.

ARD tagesschau.de showed residency-relevant paragraphs from what appeared to be a 2008 version of a residency law [Aufenthaltsgesetz, AufenthG]:

“565. Gesetz über den Aufenthalt, die Erwerbstätigkeit und die Integration von Ausländern im Bundesgebiet (Aufenthaltsgesetz, AufenthG). In der Fassung der Bekanntmachung vom 25 Feb 2008 (BGBl. I S. 162). […]” 565. Law on residency, employment and integration of foreigners in Federal German territory (Aufenthaltsgesetz, AufenthG). In the version promulgated 25 Feb 2008 (Federal Gazette I p. 162). […]
“Abschnitt 5. Auftenthalt aus völkerrechtlichen, humanitären oder politischen Gründen. Section 5. Residence due to reasons of international law [Völkerrecht, “peoples law”], humanitarian reasons or political reasons.
“§22 Aufnahme aus dem Ausland. (1) Einem Ausländer kann für die Aufnahme aus dem Ausland aus völkerrechtlichen oder dringenden humanitären Gründen eine Aufenthaltserlaubnis erteilt werden. (2) Eine Aufenthaltserlaubnis ist zu erteilen, wenn das Bundesministerium des Innern oder die von ihm bestimmte Stelle zur Wahrung politischer Interessen der Bundesrepublik Deutschland die Aufnahme erklärt hat. (3) Im Falle des Satzes 2 berechtigt die Aufenthaltserlaubnis zur Ausübung einer Erwerbstätigkeit.” §22 Admittance or acceptance from outside Germany. (1) An Aufenthaltserlaubnis can be issued to a foreigner for acceptance into Germany from abroad for international law reasons or urgent humanitarian reasons. (2) An Aufenthaltserlaubnis is to be issued when the Interior Ministry or the office they nominate has declared acceptance to protect political interests of the Federal Republic of Germany [emphasis of ARD tagesschau.de and ZDF heute journal]. (3) In the case of (2), the Aufenthaltserlaubnis shall include a work permit.

Another possibly fruitful area or “construction site” ARD tagesschau.de mentioned is the possibility that the federal prosecutor [Bundesanwalt] in Karlsruhe might use the Criminal Code [Strafgesetzbuch] to investigate certain individuals for spying on Germany.

“§99. Geheimdienstliche Agententätigkeit. §99. Secret service agent activity.
“(1) Wer (1) Whosoever
“1. für den Geheimdienst einer fremden Macht eine geheimdienstliche Tätigkeit gegen die Bundesrepublik Deutschland ausübt, die auf die Mitteilung oder Lieferung von Tatsachen, Gegenständen oder Erkenntnissen gerichtet ist, oder 1. performs a secret service activity against the Federal Republic of Germany for the intelligence service of a foreign power, said activity being directed toward the communication or delivery of facts, objects or knowledge, or
“2. gegenüber dem Geheimdienst einer fremden Macht oder einem seiner Mittelsmänner sich zu einer solchen Tätigkeit bereit erklärt, 2. declares himself or herself willing to perform such an activity to the intelligence service of a foreign power or one of their middlemen
“wird mit Freiheitsstrafe bis zu fünf Jahren oder mit Geldstrafe bestraft, wenn die Tat nicht in § 94 oder § 96 Abs. 1, in § 97a oder in § 97b in Verbindung mit § 94 oder § 96 Abs. 1 mit Strafe bedroht ist. will be punished with imprisonment [Freiheitsstrafe, “freedom punishment”] of up to five years or with a fine if the action is not punishable in accordance with §94 or §96 section 1, in accordance with §97a or in accordance with §97b in conjunction with §94 or §96 section 1.
“(2) In besonders schweren Fällen ist die Strafe Freiheitsstrafe von einem Jahr bis zu zehn Jahren. Ein besonders schwerer Fall liegt in der Regel vor, wenn der Täter Tatsachen, Gegenstände oder Erkenntnisse, die von einer amtlichen Stelle oder auf deren Veranlassung geheimgehalten werden, mitteilt oder liefert und wenn er […]” (2) In especially severe cases, the punishment shall be imprisonment from one year to up to ten years. An especially severe case is usually a case where the offender communicated or delivered facts, objects or knowledge kept secret by an official office or upon their order, or when the offender […]

und so weiter und so fort.

Tagesschau.de reported, “The federal prosecutor in Karlsruhe recently reconfirmed to ARD that relevant German authorities had been requested to send in their knowledge/ideas/facts [Erkenntnisse] regarding the bugging of the chancellor. No official preliminary investigative proceedings have been opened yet. Only after that happened would it be possible for Mr. Snowden to testify as a witness in criminal proceedings.”

(FEST nom eh eah ZOO chh en.)

Anzeige gegen unbekannt

Criminal complaint filed against unknown persons, charge filed against “X.” The first hoovered-data German citizen complaint against persons unknown has been filed in the town of Gießen. Meanwhile, the federal prosecutors’ offices in Karlsruhe [Bundesanwaltschaft] are investigating US and UK surveillance of German data. A federal prosecutor spokeswoman confirmed they’re looking into the programs Prism, Tempora and Boundless Informant, inter alia.

(ON ts eye geh   gay gen   OON beh con t.)

Sonderermittler

“Special investigator.”

In February 2012 Berlin state senator and state interior minister Frank Henkel (CDU) learned important Berlin police information about the neonazi terrorist cell but never passed it on to either parliamentary committee investigating the disaster. In March 2012 he did share the information with the federal Attorney General of Germany in Karlsruhe, who apparently informed the two investigating committees about it in Sept. 2012. Henkel now says he regrets people didn’t understand him better. He cites security concerns as the reason he didn’t tell the state and federal parliamentary investigating committees the things he was supposed to tell them. He says it was the federal Attorney General’s idea to maintain silence. (The federal Attorney General sent a letter to news agencies on 19 Sept. 2012 stating that there was no secrecy agreement.) Henkel is now considering appointing his own Berlin state Sonderermittler or special investigator to investigate the terrorist cell.

Update on 26 Sept. 2012: Senator Henkel said his police top managers are the ones who credibly indicated to him that there was an agreement with the Attorney General in Karlsruhe to keep this information secret. His police top managers wrote a letter contradicting this—on 3 April 2012. His police top managers said Spiegel’s quotes from this six-page letter are out of context. Spiegel published the entire letter online in response.

Update on 27 Sept. 2012: Henkel’s man has been named. He is a “senior prosecutor” and will investigate for three months, making regular reports including to the Berlin parliament and the Bundestag’s investigating committee.

(ZONE der err MITT lerrr.)

Untersuchungsausschuss

“Investigating committee.” There appear to be two parliamentary committees investigating the organizational failures in Germany’s federal, state and local law-enforcement, and domestic, foreign and military-intelligence, pursuits of a right-wing terrorist cell of bank-robbing serial killers that rampaged through Germany for more than a decade. The Thuringian state parliamentary committee investigating the affair is based in Erfurt. The federal investigating committee, consisting of Bundestag members, is based in Berlin.

Apparently Germany has a federal Attorney General in Karlsruhe [Bundesanwaltschaft] who is also looking into this. Some of the key organizational failures appear more willing to open their files to the federal Attorney General than to the responsible Untersuchungsausschuss committees.

Update on 16 Feb 2013: The federal investigating committee traveled to Ankara, Turkey, on 15 Feb 2013 to inform the Turkish government about the progress of the investigation. Eight of the ten people allegedly murdured by the neonazi cell had Turkish backgrounds.

(OON ter ZOO koongs ow! ss shooss.)

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