German authorities seize tank, several World War II-era military weapons in raid

Redheart

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German authorities seize tank, several World War II-era military weapons in raid

Local prosecutor Birgit Hess said the raid procured a 45-ton Panther tank, a flak cannon and a torpedo, among other weapons, from a 78-year old collector in northern Germany. The man is being investigated for possibly violating German weapons laws. The collector remains free as the investigation continues.

The suspect’s lawyer told the dpa news agency all the items seized by authorities were properly demilitarized and registered.

According to the BBC, authorities struggled to remove the tank from the suspect’s cellar. The BBC reported it took 20 soldiers nearly nine hours to get the tank, which did not have tracks, out of the cellar and onto a loader truck.

Prosecutors reportedly were tipped off about the suspect’s collection after a May investigation into black market Nazi-era art turned up two bronze horse statues that once stood in front of Adolf Hitler’s office.

According to neighbors, it was no secret the suspect had a tank. Neighbor Kristin Schroeder told the local Kieler Nachrichten newspaper that the man had used the tank during a harsh winter in 1978 to help people move snow.

“It was well known, at least to all the older Kitzebergers, that he had a tank,” Schroeder said.
 

Xanthosh

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Very shady business here. With armament was found Nazi art. There's something to it more than meets the eye.
They should investigate further, and know what's going on under the surface.
 
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I don't understand what the big deal over this is? I mean he's just collected a few monuments to history that I highly doubt he had intended to use in a harmful way. Keep an eye on him maybe but if he's not hurting anyone then leave him be.

I also find it, I think heart-warming is the right way I want to put it, that 3 decades later and that Panther was still being put to use. I just really hope the stuff is not destroyed.
 

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Civilians shouldn't have in their possession military equipment. It's their destructive power that is scary. Imagine a terrorist getting hold of a tank and he's got ammunition . . .

Authorities can't take any chances. Should anything happen then everyone would want to know why no action was taken against the tank owner. So they do what has to be done — seize the tank.
 
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Civilians shouldn't have in their possession military equipment. It's their destructive power that is scary. Imagine a terrorist getting hold of a tank and he's got ammunition . . .

Authorities can't take any chances. Should anything happen then everyone would want to know why no action was taken against the tank owner. So they do what has to be done — seize the tank.
As the article states very well, ALL of the items recovered were properly demilitarized and on top of that, they were registered. But demilitarized is the key word here.. if the tank doesn't have functioning weapons and can't move on it's own then is it really such a big threat? So I don't really understand what the fuzz is about or why they were seized in the first place.
 
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Civilians shouldn't have in their possession military equipment. It's their destructive power that is scary. Imagine a terrorist getting hold of a tank and he's got ammunition . . .

Authorities can't take any chances. Should anything happen then everyone would want to know why no action was taken against the tank owner. So they do what has to be done — seize the tank.
But the article states that the stuff taken was demilitarized, and the tank was not even on tracks so I really do not understand how much of a danger his collection was. As I said previous, maybe keep an eye on him but I highly doubt there was any sort of risk of him going on a rampage with over half a century old equipment.

Anyway, I think I've just seen a picture of the Panther tank being put onto a low loader. It looks in really good condition for it's age. The paint looks quite fresh and it looks like it's been well looked after for all this time. Lets just hope it goes to a museum now instead of being destroyed under some law.
 
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But the article states that the stuff taken was demilitarized, and the tank was not even on tracks so I really do not understand how much of a danger his collection was. As I said previous, maybe keep an eye on him but I highly doubt there was any sort of risk of him going on a rampage with over half a century old equipment.
Ultimately, it is not about whether he should be able to own a tank or not, it is simply German law that states you can't own Nazi items of the sort, so the weapons and tank being demilitarized have no effect on the matter and were bound to seizure. What I can't fathom, however, is why didn't the collector just hop onto his tank and rode off into the sunset, maybe blitzkrieging France in the process for good measure, it's what I would have done in his place.
 
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A big problem with that is that the tank didn't have any tracks on it, so it would be kinda difficult to ride it away into the sunset.

I thought the Nazi items law only counted towards things bearing a swastika or anything which puts Nazism in a good light or praises it?
 
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If I heard someone was on their way to come take my tank away I'd have that baby re tracked in record time, thing that has apparently been done in the past given that he somehow helped his neighbors with their snow problems, proving that there's no trouble in your life that can't be solved by owning a tank.

Also the tank can't be his property the same way the Declaration of Independence can't be mine, they belong to the State and the people as a whole.
 
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I have a feeling that the tracks had been taken off after it was used to help during the bad winter and I don't think it would be that easy to re-track it seeing as it was in a basement and the guy was in his late 70's. Even if he had a support team of people who were familiar with the tank, even then it would not be a five minute job by any means.

If, for discussions sake, he did get it re-tracked again, where would he go with it? He would have the German police and possibly a slight military presence all out looking for him. I don't think there would be many places he could hide with it. You could argue that he kept it hidden for so long so how hard could it be, but then the locals probably knew about it but simply "overlooked" it as an everyday thing.

As to his possession of the tank, could he have bought it after the war when it was being readied for scrap? Or do you think he could have just took it?
 
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How did the old man get a hold of a tank used in world war 2? Anyways I would love to see one of the mighty German tanks up close and even get the chance to go inside one for a tour. Maybe the old timer has some connection to persons who were a part of the Nazi army.
 
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Aged 70 and with the power of heavy armor backing me up I'd take a joyride of a lifetime, never-mind the consequences.

As to his possession of the tank, It could have just been abandoned or overlooked after the war ended, and he just stumbled upon it on his walk back home, or he could have paid some big bucks on the black market, but it is all speculation. I like to think it was his father's tank he "inherited". There was a lot of ordinance, vehicles and equipment that got left behind by all sides of the conflict, who knows how many more people have some extra special memorabilia in their cellars.
 
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I don't understand what the big deal over this is? I mean he's just collected a few monuments to history that I highly doubt he had intended to use in a harmful way. Keep an eye on him maybe but if he's not hurting anyone then leave him be.

I also find it, I think heart-warming is the right way I want to put it, that 3 decades later and that Panther was still being put to use. I just really hope the stuff is not destroyed.
I agree with what you said. The guy is probably a collector and if those weaponry are demilitarized and registered then what's the buzz. Obviously, those weapons and even ammos, if there are any, are not meant to be used now unless the said collector is insane. Anyway, I'm sure this issue will be cleared and be proven that everything is in order.
 
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Aged 70 and with the power of heavy armor backing me up I'd take a joyride of a lifetime, never-mind the consequences.

As to his possession of the tank, It could have just been abandoned or overlooked after the war ended, and he just stumbled upon it on his walk back home, or he could have paid some big bucks on the black market, but it is all speculation. I like to think it was his father's tank he "inherited". There was a lot of ordinance, vehicles and equipment that got left behind by all sides of the conflict, who knows how many more people have some extra special memorabilia in their cellars.
The more I think about it the more I think that maybe he happened by it. Say he saw it being readied to be broken up and slipped the person in charge of it all some money and he became the proud owner of a Panther tank. There was indeed loads of stuff left behind and I doubt it was uncommon to see WW2 stuff around even a few years after.

I've now got an urge to ask the guy how he came by the tank and get his own words on it.
 
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