Presidential bodyguard suspended after losing gun in Berlin hotel

Presidential bodyguard suspended after losing gun in Berlin hotel
Archive photo shows a Glock 17 service weapon. Photo: DPA
A search is underway for a missing gun that belonged to a bodyguard who is part of the unit responsible for German President Frank-Walter Steinmeier, as well as former presidents.

The bodyguard of the Federal Criminal Police Office (BKA) reported his service weapon missing around 4am on Wednesday morning, according to BKA, reports the Tagesspiegel.

The gun is said to have gone missing in a three-star hotel in the gritty southern Berlin district of Neukölln, near the Grenzallee underground station. 

A search is now underway for the ‘Glock 17’ pistol, which was lost along with its ammunition. 

According to reports, the officer is from the personal protection unit in the Lower Saxony State Criminal Police Office, who currently works for the BKA in 'Security Group 1'.

That unit is responsible for protecting incumbent and former federal presidents, and is based in the Treptow district, 15 minutes away from the hotel where the gun disappeared.

SEE ALSO: Five things to know about guns in Germany

Initial reports said the man was a bodyguard for current president Steinmeier.

However, the office of the Federal President has pointed out that this official “is not responsible for Frank-Walter Steinmeier”. And that “none of Frank-Walter Steinmeier's bodyguards is missing a service weapon”.
This makes it clear that the officer may have been responsible for the protection of a former president as part of the special unit, but it is not clear for whom. Former presidents who have previously been protected by the unit include Horst Köhler, Christian Wulff and Joachim Gauk.

The officer has been suspended from his duties while the probe is underway. The Berlin public prosecutor's office has taken over the investigation.

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