French arrest 3 reported neo-Nazis suspected of attack plot

National News

PARIS (AP) — Two men and a woman, alleged neo-Nazis, have been arrested in eastern France after investigators uncovered a plan to attack at least one Masonic lodge, French media reported Friday.

The three were being handed over to France’s anti-terrorism prosecutor for possible charges, the reports said. The prosecutor’s office did not immediately respond to queries from The Associated Press on the arrests.

BFMTV reported that a Masonic lodge in the eastern Moselle region was targeted, although it appeared the attack had not gone beyond the planning stage.

The three were among six people arrested Tuesday in the Bas-Rhin and Doubs regions. Three of the six were released. The men being investigated are 29 and 56 years old and the woman was 53, according to French media.

The three, already on the radar of authorities, were arrested because of communications between them and stake-outs of targets, the newspaper Le Monde reported.

In recent years in France, there have been numerous arrests of extreme-right groups, including neo-Nazis.

In 2018, six people were arrested on suspicion of plotting to attack President Emmanuel Macron. Nine members of an ultra-right group calling itself OAS who were arrested in 2017 are awaiting word of when they will go to trial.

Last year, 15 members of a group calling itself Operational Action Forces, allegedly looking to target Muslims, were placed under investigation.

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