Austrian police have raided ten homes and offices of identitarian activists, including Generation Identity co-leaders Martin Sellner and Patrick Lenart.
The authorities seized Sellner’s electronic devices including his phone and computers, with a Graz prosecutor looking to prosecute the activists as a criminal organisation.
The announcement of the raids came from Martin Sellner himself, who took to Twitter saying that the police had raided his apartment in Vienna and confiscated all of his electronic devices.
Today my and @PatrickLenart s private flats were broken into and searched by austrian police. Also across they country they searched GI-offices and houses. An attorney wants to ban GI in Austria & put us up to 3 years in prison for critizing islam with peaceful actions.
— Martin Sellner (@Martin_Sellner) April 27, 2018
According to Sellner, who spoke with Breitbart London following the raids, the nationwide police operation came at the behest of the Graz prosecutor, who has been building a case against the identitarian movement following a protest in 2016 in which they hung a banner reading “Islamisation kills” on the roof of the Green Party’s Graz headquarters.
Sellner claimed that the prosecutor was looking to use evidence found in the raid to have his identitarian movement banned as a criminal organisation under the Austrian equivalent of the Racketeer Influenced and Corrupt Organizations (RICO) Act, article 278 of the Austrian penal code, as well as article 283 which covers “incitement to hostile action” against religious and ethnic groups.
Sellner rose to prominence across Europe and North America last month when he and his partner, author and political commentator Brittany Pettibone, were detained and refused entry to the United Kingdom.
Sellner had planned on giving a speech at Hyde Park’s famous speaker’s corner on the subject of free speech.
— Breitbart London (@BreitbartLondon) March 18, 2018
The speech was rewritten while Sellner was detained for several days and later read out by former English Defence League leader turned citizens journalist Tommy Robinson to a crowd of thousands of supporters.
Graz public prosecutor’s office prosecuting attorney Dr Christian Kroschl confirmed the raids occurred with Austrian newspaper Heute on Friday, and said the activists were under investigation for the formation of a criminal organization, suspicion of incitement, and property damage.
The raids come less than a week after Sellner participated in the second major Defend Europe mission in the French Alps, which saw well over a hundred activists from across Europe highlight the illegal migration of thousands of migrants through the Col de l’Echelle mountain pass.
The action made headlines in France and led to French Interior Minister Gerard Collomb announcing that the government would send additional personnel to guard the border with Italy.
The Defend Europe mission continued through the week, with activists managing to catch several migrants attempting to cross into France illegally and working in conjunction with police to have them detained.
— Defend Europe (@DefendEuropeID) April 27, 2018
Police raids are not new for the anti-mass migration hipster-right activists. In 2016, one of the organisation’s German members had his home raided after authorities claimed he was engaging in vandalism by putting up stickers around his town.
Follow Chris Tomlinson on Twitter at @TomlinsonCJ or email at ctomlinson(at)breitbart.com