How is the Attorney General appointed

Opposition criticizes the appointment : Andreas Behm becomes the new Attorney General in Brandenburg

Two judicial personnel are causing political explosions in Brandenburg. Both the appointment of the former Berlin Chief Public Prosecutor Andreas Behm, close to the SPD, as the new General Public Prosecutor in Brandenburg and the proposal by Prime Minister Dietmar Woidke (SPD) to appoint the former President of the State Constitutional Court, the Social Democrat Jes Möller, as judge at the Federal Constitutional Court aroused severe criticism from the opposition.

The 61-year-old Andreas Behm will become the new chief prosecutor in the market on June 1st. On Tuesday, the cabinet in Potsdam blessed the personnel proposal from Justice Minister Susanne Hoffmann (CDU) - who was prosecutor general for a few months before being appointed minister in November. Hoffmann had prevailed under Red-Red with her application for the chief prosecutor's office and was the first woman in Brandenburg in this position. The losing applicant at the time: Andreas Behm.

Now, in the red-black-green coalition, the CDU is also behind Behm and defends him against criticism. "As the former head of the Berlin Public Prosecutor's Office and thus the largest prosecutor in Germany, Andreas Behm has a great deal of specialist knowledge and expertise for the office of the State Attorney General of Brandenburg," said Hoffmann.

Behm was head of the Berlin public prosecutor's office from 2006 to 2016. Before that, he headed the largest prison in Germany, the Hamburg Fuhlsbüttel correctional facility known as "Santa Fu". Behm, who comes from Schleswig-Holstein, is charged with a number of judicial mishaps in Berlin, for example during the raid on the Artemis brothel in 2016. The Berlin district court later decided not to even open a main trial - the indictment was too thin.

After a search during investigations into scrap real estate in 2014, Behm had to admit that he had not applied for the waiver of the immunity of CDU MP Michael Braun. Also in 2014, Behm had the rapper Bushido charged with insulting the then Governing Mayor Klaus Wowereit (SPD) against the advice of experts. The district court dismissed the charges. It later became clear that Behm was hiding contacts with Wowereit's lawyer.

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"Brandenburg would be well advised if we find another candidate," said left parliamentary group leader Sebastian Walter, on Tuesday before the official approval of the personnel. He had doubts whether Behm was suitable for the post in view of the Berlin mishaps.

The former, well-known attorney general Erardo Rautenberg, who died in 2018, campaigned for the position of attorney general not to be filled politically. With the appointment of Behm, he now sees "political entanglements," said Walter. At that time, the Left had campaigned against the will of the SPD for Hoffmann as chief prosecutor. However, it was also the left that brought the now criticized Behm to Brandenburg: in 2016 he became head of the penal system in the Justice Ministry led by the left.

He was sure that one could learn from the Berlin mishaps, however, said CDU parliamentary group leader Jan Redmann, himself a lawyer. "He did a good job in Brandenburg," emphasized SPD parliamentary group leader Erik Stohn, also a lawyer. The Greens, the smallest partner in the Brandenburg Kenya Alliance, do not comment on Behm's personality - to which there was no alternative. According to the Equal Opportunities Act, the advertisement had to be repeated because no woman had applied. But there was no applicant in the second round either.

Another judicial personnel is also causing debates: As reported, Jes Möller could become the first East German judge at the Federal Constitutional Court in Karlsruhe. The Free Voters rub themselves against this because Möller, as President of the State Constitutional Court in 2012, declared the retroactive cashing for water connections from GDR times to be legal. Karlsruhe later corrected the Potsdam decision.

Möller's actions were "a slap in the face of many East Germans," said the group leader of BVB / Free Voters, Péter Vida. Möller did not question his judgment. "The Federal Constitutional Court Act does not say: The Federal Constitutional Court is never to be questioned and always has the last word," said today's candidate for Karlsruhe.

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