Sex affair in Baden-Württemberg: Strobl’s resignation demanded

DThe Stuttgart public prosecutor’s office is now also investigating Interior Minister Thomas Strobl in connection with the case involving allegations of harassment against a senior police officer. The background is that the CDU politician forwarded a letter from the policeman’s lawyer to a journalist. The prosecution said on Wednesday evening that investigations had been opened against the journalist suspected of prohibited reporting on court hearings and against Strobl suspected of incitement to it.

On Wednesday, Strobl had to explain the allegations at a non-public meeting of the state parliament’s interior committee – even before the prosecution’s investigations were known. The SPD and FDP demanded Strobl’s resignation after he apparently confirmed at the meeting that his house’s letter had been passed on to the media.

SPD parliamentary group leader Andreas Stoch calls the process outrageous. The leader of the FDP parliamentary group, Hans-Ulrich Rülke, declared: “With the chasms opening up, this minister can no longer remain in office.” It was a “fundamental attack on the rule of law by the constitutional minister”. Either Strobl resigns or the FDP will call for a commission of inquiry.

“Maximum lightening and maximum transparency”

Strobl rejected the resignation request. “An error was made in the communication,” admitted Strobl. It was wrong not to say that the Ministry of the Interior itself had disseminated the letter from the policeman’s lawyer to the press. In the process, however, he is concerned with “maximum clarity and maximum transparency”. One wonders if any secrets were revealed, he said. According to Strobl, the opposition must decide whether to demand transparent action or to castigate it. “It’s about nothing less than the integrity of the police and security authorities in Baden-Württemberg.”

The case started at the Home Office late last year. Around this time, it became public knowledge that State Police Inspector Andreas R. allegedly sexually harassed a police officer during a video call. The commissioner had recorded the insinuations. There may have been consensual sexual contact between the two people before. Since November, the prosecutor’s office has been investigating suspicions of sexual harassment against the state police inspector, who has been suspended from his duties. His attorney reportedly filed an objection to the leave in the punctuated letter to the media and denied the allegations.

The defendant is, along with State Police Chief Stefanie Hinz, the highest-ranking police officer in the state. The case also caused a stir within the Baden-Württemberg police because Hinz and the accused only launched a values ​​campaign against sexual harassment in the police in 2021. Under the slogan “Not with us” , the approximately 24,000 civil servants should be prevented from engaging in sexist and racist behaviour. In addition, Strobl is also responsible for selecting the personnel of the Director of State Police and Chief of State Police.

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