Top neo-Nazi trial begins in Germany 16 accused

Among the defendants is Michael Petri, the chairman of Deutsche Nationalisten, who is one of the key figures in the neo-Nazi scene in Germany.

Deutsche Alternative was declared unlawful Dec. 8, 1992. Four months later, a federal court ruled that the organization was of an anti-Semitic and racist nature and was patterned after the Nazis.

The defendants allegedly recreated the banned organization under new names: Aktionfront and Deutschen Nationalisten.

Police recently broke up violent clashes between neo-Nazis and leftist opponents in the southern town of Passau, which borders Austria. More than 20 people, both neo-Nazis and leftists, were arrested, police said.