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Slovak far-right leader charged with using neo-Nazi symbols

SLOVAK FAR-RIGHT LEADER CHARGED WITH USING NEO-NAZI SYMBOLS

The leader of a far-right party with seats in the Slovak parliament has been charged with crimes related to the use of neo-Nazi symbols, police said Friday.

Marian Kotleba, head of the People's Party Our Slovakia, has been charged, according to police spokesman Martin Waldl.

He gave no other details, but police said in May they were opening an investigation into whether the party gave financial gifts of 1,488 euros to several poor families in March. The number 1,488 has a symbolic meaning for neo-Nazis.

Kotleba openly admires the country's World War II-era Nazi puppet state. His party has 14 lawmakers in the 150-seat parliament.

Separately, Slovakia's prosecutor general also asked the Supreme Court in May to ban the party. That decision is still pending.

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