German politician contests paedophile claims

Monday, May 05, 2014

Sebastian Edathy accuses investigators of deliberately leaking information to the press on child pornography claims in order to destroy his credibility and reputation

Sebastian Edathy accuses investigators of deliberately leaking information to the press on child pornography claims in order to destroy his credibility and reputation

BERLIN – Former German politician and head of a committee tasked with investigating the failures of police in the serial murders of eight Turkish immigrants by a far-right German terrorist group, filed a complaint on Monday with Germany’s Constitutional Court saying that police raids on his house in February as part of a child pornography investigation against him, were "unconstitutional".

Sebastian Edathy, announced his resignation from parliament "for health reasons" on February 7, 2014.

Just two days after his resignation went public, his home and offices were searched by authorities; media outlets asserted that the searches were made on allegations of possession of child pornography.

“The decisions made by the police are a violation of the constitution,” Edathy's lawyer Christian Noll told German weekly Der Spiegel. He added that the raids were made despite the lack of any concrete evidence. Edathy has accused investigators of trying to destroy his credibility and reputation.

Edathy was widely praised for his efforts in 2012 and 2013 to investigate the failure of German security organizations in shedding light into the Neo nazi murders of a group calling themselves the ″National Socialist Underground.″

The social democrat deputy, a son of a German mother and an Indian father, criticized the widespread stereotypes and prejudices against immigrants among the police and intelligence organizations.

The police in Germany’s Lower Saxony state launched a criminal investigation against Sebastian Edathy in late 2013 with the suspicion that he might possess photos and videos of child pornography. According to German police, Edathy’s name was on a list of customers who had purchased material from a Canadian company which had been one of the leading global providers of child pornography. The list was sent to German authorities by the Canadian police following a major operation to this company in 2012.

Edathy has denied allegations of possessing photographs and videos with child pornographic content, but admitted to having purchased some material from the Canadian firm in the past, which was later investigated for child pornography. He insisted the material he purchased was "unambiguously legal."

Although he resigned from parliament, he is still a member of the Social Democratic Party (SPD).

Edathy posted in his Facebook page in February that he has been receiving various death threats following the accusations and he told Der Spiegel weekly that he is not planning to return to Germany again.

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