Local media reported that a celebrity chef was among those who were arrested in connection to an alleged plot by far-right terrorists to overthrow Germany’s government.
Frank Heppner (62), who is the father to Real Madrid star David Alaba, was arrested in Kitzbuhel, Austria, where he owns a restaurant.
The foiled coup by the Reichsbur movement, also known as the Reich Citizens movement, led to the largest ever national police operation against right-wing extremism.
Raids were conducted in 11 of 16 US states last week. 3,000 armed police stormed up to 100 properties in Baden-Wuerttemberg and Bavaria, Berlin and Hesse, Lower Saxony and Thuringia as well as Kitzbuhel, Perugia and other Italian cities.
Heinrich XIII Prince Reuss (a 71-year old aristocrat) was allegedly the target of the plotters. He was one of those who were arrested.
Prosecutors claimed that the group intended to make him Germany’s next leader.
According to Austrian newspaper Die Presse, Heppner’s role in the coup would have been to “takeover the canteens and the new German Reich” to supply troops.
Heppner is a specialist in Euro-Asian cuisine and has worked previously in five-star hotels around the globe.
Shalimar Heppner (28 year old) has a son who is Real Madrid’s Alaba and also captains the Austrian team. Sky News reached out to him for comment.
According to German authorities, 23 suspected members and their supporters were arrested.
Prosecutors claimed that 22 German citizens and one Russian woman were taken into custody during raids. They also requested the extradition of two more people held in Italy and Austria.
More arrests are likely to follow.
According to Der Spiegel: The raids resulted in 9mm pistols being seized, as well as swords, knives and stun guns. Combat helmets, night vision equipment and duty weapons belonging to police officers were also among the suspects.
Die Tageszeitung, a left-leaning newspaper, reported that investigators discovered a “hitlist” containing 18 addresses and names of prominent German journalists and politicians that they may have wanted to target.
The Reichsburger movement is a coalition of far-right groups who want to overthrow the government and replace it by their own.
According to authorities, Reichsburger members have been planning to carry out “actions based on their ideology” starting in November 2021.
Nancy Faese, the German interior minister, stated that the raids were a sign of Germany’s “fighting back against democracy’s enemies”.
This case has brought to light the far-right Alternative for Germany party once again. The raids also saw Birgit M-W, a female judge who was believed to have been linked with the party.
It was believed that her intended role after the coup was to be justice minister.
The party is known by its German acronym AfD and has been under increasing scrutiny by German security agencies due to its links with extremists.