Hand grenades, rifle, crossbow & machete found in new neo-Nazi cell bust in Italy
Italian police seized a new cache of weapons and Nazi materials during a raid on an underground far-right group linked with the conflict in Ukraine. The bust is tied to an earlier raid in which an air-to-air missile was found.
Last week, the General Investigations and Special Operations Division (DIGOS) found a cache of 20 firearms, an air-to-air missile, and Nazi memorabilia. Police arrested three suspects, including Fabio Del Bergiolo, a former customs officer and one-time failed Senate candidate from the neo-fascist Forza Nuova party.
On Friday, a Turin-based counter-terrorism unit raided Del Bergiolo’s second residence in Massa Carrara province. Police found a rifle with two magazines and a tripod used for shooting, a handgun, a compound bow with 13 darts, a crossbow pistol, and a machete. Various ammunition was also discovered at the scene, as well as hand grenades and mortar bombs.
As in the previous raid, neo-Nazi materials were found – in this case, dozens of DVDs and VHS tapes with propaganda films, such as the infamous 1935 film ‘Triumph of the Will’ which was produced in Nazi Germany. There was also a framed photo of Benito Mussolini, Italy’s fascist leader during WWII. The materials are in line with “the extremist ideology” of Del Bergiolo, police said.
The first raid caused confusion in the media. In their initial reports, police explicitly stated that they targeted domestic groups that fought “against the separatists” in eastern Ukraine, meaning the forces of the breakaway Donetsk and Lugansk People’s Republics, which oppose the central government in Kiev.
Several high-profile Western news organizations, however, misquoted police, saying the group fought “alongside” the rebels, not against them. BBC and Reuters later altered their stories after being alerted.
Police then told RT that there was an “error” in their report and altered their press release, removing all mentions of which side in the conflict in Ukraine the members of the investigated far-right group had fought for. The press release now simply says they “participated” in the conflict.
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