Ex-NPD treasurer jailed for stealing neo-Nazi party funds

Ex-NPD treasurer jailed for stealing neo-Nazi party funds
Kemna in the courtroom on Friday. Photo: DPA
The former treasurer of Germany’s far-right NPD party on Friday was sentenced to two years and eight months in jail for embezzling more than €700,000 ($976,339) in party funds.

A state court in Münster found Erwin Kemna had redirected the money from NPD accounts into his struggling kitchen studio company starting in early 2004 through the summer of 2007.

“I considered the finances of my firm and those of the party as one and the same,” Kemna said in his confession at the start of the trial.

The 57-year-old attempted to save his company from going under with the money from the NPD’s party coffers. The right-wing extremist, who has been a member of the neo-Nazi party since 1974, has already been in custody for seven months. He was guaranteed a sentence under three years for cooperating with the prosecution.

NPD Secretary General Peter Marx said he hoped the party would now be able to recoup some of the funds. The German government once tried to ban the party as unconstitutional, but failed due to technicalities. The NPD still receives government funding available to all major political parties.