Michael Ballweg rose to prominence as the leader of the Querdenken (“lateral thinking”) movement in Germany during the early phase of protests against the COVID-19 lockdowns and restrictions in 2020. He has now been arrested, and will be in state custody indefinitely.
Below is an article about the arrest of Mr. Ballweg from Politically Incorrect, also translated by MissPiggy:
“Michael Ballweg Could Remain Imprisoned For A Long Time”
by Manfred Rouhs
Michael Ballweg, the founder of the Querdenken movement, is in custody. He is accused of planning his escape and fraudulent handling of donations totalling €640,000 euros. An entire team of lawyers is defending him. Among them is Ralf Dalla Fini, who, according to media reports, does not expect his client to be released in the near future.
Anyone who receives donations must account for them. Associations must submit their financial records to their local tax office for corporations. Income may only be used in accordance with the articles of association. A receipt must be kept for every cent spent by the association — for ten years.
Political parties are required to submit an annual statement of accounts to the Bundestag administration, which must be certified by an auditor. The auditor’s work costs money, usually in the five-digit euro range. An auditor may come under pressure if he certifies the accounts of an officially undesirable political party. This does not make his work any cheaper; rather the opposite.
Michael Ballweg’s Querdenken (Lateral Thinking) movement never had any worries of this kind. The 47-year-old apparently took in several hundred thousand euros, mostly in small amounts, as donations. He did not owe his supporters anything in return and caused a public hullabaloo.
Whether there was any money left over after that, and what became of it, is something the police are now reportedly trying to determine. It is difficult to estimate what will come of this.
Provocateurs can easily stage an accusation of fraud in connection with donations. The acceptance of gifts is generally legally problematic if there is neither a relationship of kinship nor a special personal relationship of trust between the parties involved.
Mass gifts regularly arouse the suspicion of the tax authorities. They can arbitrarily construct anything they like — and the person who took the money then has to prove them wrong.
The idea of financing a politically undesirable protest movement through donations is daring. In my estimation, and based on my experience with auditors, the Bundestag administration and especially the tax office, the matter will not end well.
Also: a mainstream media article (which says pretty much the same as the PI News article).
|01:44||Since Wednesday, Michael Ballweg, the founder of Querdenken 711 movement,|
|01:48||has been in custody and is under investigation. The authorities have accused him of|
|01:52||embezzlement and money laundering. Supporters, on the other hand,|
|01:56||speak of an attempt to criminalize criticism of the government. Independent observers|
|02:00||are at least concerted about the judiciary’s crackdown.|
|02:05||On Thursday, about 100 people demonstrated in Berlin for Ballweg’s release.|
|02:10||They revealed to CONTACT magazine their reasons why.|
|02:14||I don’t believe he’s as bad a person as is communicated.|
|02:21||I also think some other people should be arrested right now instead of Michael.|
|02:29||Today I am here, first of all for Michael Ballweg, to say Free Ballweg! That is very clear.|
|02:36||That’s the reason for the demo today. — It’s quite clear that we’re experiencing fascism,|
|02:41||and that this arrest has a political motivation. It is meant to intimidate the movement and punish|
|02:48||one person. Like Stalin said: “Punish one, teach a hundred”.|
|02:54||So this is an attempt to try to intimidate people,|
|02:58||but I think that won’t work on the long term. Over the last two years,|
|03:03||many other initiatives have started, and all these initiatives can no longer be stopped.|
|03:10||I hope that on August 1 we will actually manage to demonstrate all together. United we can|
|03:18||express our distrust of the current political establishment|
|03:23||and perhaps bring about a significant change.|
|03:27||(Sign) I don’t want to be poor, hungry or freeze because of war caused by NATO/G7/Corrupt Elite|
|03:30||I haven’t been to Monday demonstrations for a while. I think it’s a pity|
|03:33||that the movement is falling asleep. Officially, although it seems like|
|03:38||the Corona measures have stopped, behind the scenes|
|03:42||the police still intervene. Recently, a friend of mine had her apartment searched,|
|03:47||allegedly because of falsification of documents. She had a doctor’s certificate for|
|03:51||mask exemption that was 100% legit. I’m noticing that behind the scenes,|
|03:55||the screws are really being tightened. For that reason, I think it’s a pity that the movement|
|03:59||is losing momentum, which is the reason I came.