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September 25, 2017

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Four German police wounded in raid on far-right group in Bavaria

BERLIN--Four German police officers were wounded, some of them seriously, when a member of the far-right "Citizens of the Reich" group opened fire during a raid Wednesday, authorities said.

The 49-year-old alleged gunman belonging to the so-called Reichsbuerger movement was also slightly injured in the exchange of gunfire in the Bavarian town of Georgensmuend and taken into custody, police said in a statement.

Local authorities had ordered the seizure of the man's firearms, for which he had a permit, because they were deemed to be "faulty."

State interior minister Joachim Herrmann was to brief the media later Wednesday.

It was the second incident in three months involving the Reichsbuerger, which does not recognize the legitimacy of the German republic and believes in the continued existence of the German empire or "Reich."

In August, a member of the group — a former Mister Germany pageant winner — opened fire on police carrying out an eviction order at his house in the eastern state of Saxony-Anhalt.

The suspect was seriously wounded and three police officers suffered light injuries.

The Office for the Protection of the Constitution, Germany's domestic security watchdog which keeps tabs on extremist groups, said it had no current figures on the number of Reichsbuerger members.

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