My home was raided by the German anti-terror police

Published on 9th November 2023.

I am a climate activist. I am generally friendly with the police, including on the day of my raid, May 24th. I shook hands with several police officers and thanked them for the way they had worked.

Granted, they woke me up very early and took a lot of things away from me, including many private letters, my phone, my laptop. They were supposed to take my cash, too, but thankfully just counted it and gave it back. They also seized the server located at my hosting company, along with my private homepage https://blaeul.de and customer projects.

But in contrast to how you might think a police raid goes, they left my girlfriend's and my dad's apartments very tidy after carefully examining every item. Luckily, they did not have a court order to search my own home, where my kids live. I have nothing to hide, but the thought of the police seizing my kids’ tech is just terrible. Though, from my court files I know that my kids’ phones are tapped, as is mine. Call me on Signal to get around that. They also had a court order for my bank account, to get a list of all transfers.

The secret tapping of my phone and that of my minor children is unnecessary for investigations: we always announce our climate protests, stay on site, and always provide our personal information to the police. Reducing CO₂ emissions is important enough to me to continue despite this invation of privacy. However, monitoring private communication undermines free expression and is therefore poison for our democracy, as no one can be sure whether they are being targeted by the state. A disturbing example of this is the seizure of postal addresses of supporters of the Fridays For Future movement, simply because they ordered stickers.

Sure, my life would be easier without the raid. I was so lucky: no trauma from the past, no weapons drawn, no screaming. Balaclavas worn only on the street, not inside the apartments. I feel privileged.

I have no anger or other negative feelings against the public prosecutor or the judge in Munich who made the decisions. I consider the decision to be unwise and legally questionable. The result is now part of my journey, and that's okay. Our livelihoods are in great danger because of the climate crisis. I cannot accept that we continue to progress at a snail's pace politically when it comes to climate protection and I will continue to take to the streets peacefully and resolutely for laws that reduce our green house gas emissions, to not place the burden on everyone’s grandchildren.
The police and the judiciary are just as affected by the climate crisis and our government's lack of urgency to protect the climate as everyone else. Even if my home gets raided again. I am alright.

It has now been 6 months since the raids. Still no charges have been filed. I'm still waiting to get my electronics and my letters back.

The raids made it into international news:

I often have court dates, where I usually defend myself without a lawyer, in a highly political way. I don’t get paid for climate activism apart from small donations from my readers. I have open fines and penalties of about 25’000 €. Whenever I need money, I work as a software developer, in other words, I have less time for my political work. If you would like to send me money, here is my PayPal address: [email protected].

Die Anti-Terror-Polizei trägt meine Sachen zu ihren Autos.

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