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Pakistani family in Germany arrested for burning down their own house and blaming ‘Nazis’ in alleged hate hoax

Wächtersbach hate hoax

Five Pakistanis have been arrested in Germany for allegedly setting fire to their own home and spray-painting “foreigners out” on the walls to make it look like a hate crime.

The fire in the town of Wächtersbach, 50km from Frankfurt, burned for eight hours on Christmas Day last year and caused an estimated €350,000 worth of damage.

The anti-foreigner slogans found painted in seven places at the scene sparked candlelight vigils organised by left-wing politicians, who used the incident to denounce “Nazis” and attack the surging right-wing Alternative for Germany (AfD) party.

Now prosecutors say the five accused, who include the homeowner, 47, and his brother-in-law, 34, carried out the arson attack themselves for insurance money, and tried to mislead investigators by making it appear racially motivated, Remix News reported.

The Pakistani family, who were described by the town’s leftist mayor as “well-integrated”, told police they were not home at the time of the fire, but investigators noticed a burn on the arm of the homeowner.

Also in custody are the man’s wife, 33, their son, 18, and another man, 55, who gave the family a false alibi.

The AfD in the state of Hesse said that the initial categorisation of the arson attack as a right-wing hate crime was “a slap in the face to many thousands of AfD voters”.

“Just a few weeks ago, the citizens had placed their trust in us with a great election result (in Hesse). In some communities, we are even the strongest force, even ahead of the governing parties,” the AfD said in a statement.

“For our political competitors, the house fire was obviously a welcome opportunity to inflict hatred and agitation on our party and our voters. Almost reflexively, the SPD, the Left and the Greens classified this crime as politically motivated.

“Wächtersbach’s mayor (a member of SPD), who is said to have known the affected Pakistani family to be well integrated, took the same line.

“At this point, we can also answer the question of what the AfD would do differently. In this case, we would raise the bar for successful integration a little higher.

“Anyone who attracts attention with criminal acts in their freely chosen host country at least raises doubts about successful integration. But we now trust that the German judiciary will make an appropriate assessment. And an apology from the protagonists of the vigil is now in order.”

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