National Socialist Underground member Beate Zschaepe denies taking part in the murder of 10 people.

Defendant Beate Zschaepe, accused of helping to found a neo-Nazi cell called the National Socialist Underground (NSU), arrives for the continuation of her trial in Munich, Germany, September 1, 2017. (Reuters)
Defendant Beate Zschaepe, accused of helping to found a neo-Nazi cell called the National Socialist Underground (NSU), arrives for the continuation of her trial in Munich, Germany, September 1, 2017. (Reuters)

A German prosecutor urged judges on Tuesday to give a sentence of life imprisonment to Beate Zschaepe, the main surviving member of a neo-Nazi gang accused of murdering ten people beginning in 2000.

National Socialist Underground (NSU) member Zschaepe denies taking part in the murder of the 10 – eight Turks, a Greek and a German – over seven years. Most of the victims were immigrants. The German was a policewoman.

Zschaepe, 42, denied taking part in the murders with two friends who killed themselves in 2011 when police discovered the gang by chance.

But she has, through her lawyer, said she felt morally guilty for not stopping them.

"The accused is criminally fully responsible for her behaviour," said federal prosecutor Herbert Diemer, calling for Zschaepe to be given a life sentence for the 10 murders.

He described Zschaepe as an "ice-cold, calculating person", adding that there were no mitigating circumstances.

The accused listened impassively, resting her chin on her hands in the courtroom in Munich, southern Germany.

Prosecutors said in July that four years of hearing evidence had shown that Zschaepe was a "co-founder, member and accomplice" of a terrorist organisation.

The group had carried out "the most violent and infamous terror attacks"  ̶  including two bombings and 15 bank robberies  ̶  since the end of the Red Army Faction's two-decade spree in 1991, in which 34 people are estimated to have been killed.

The NSU murders were carried out by Zschaepe's two friends, Uwe Mundlos and Uwe Boehnhardt, who are both now dead in what is believed to have been a murder-suicide. But prosecutors say she played a major role behind the scenes.

Source: TRTWorld and agencies