Trial against total objector Marko Langert on 1 December 1999

By Torsten Froese

On Prisoners for Peace Day, the German total objector Marko Langert will be on trial in Leipzig, Germany. Marko Langert was already sentenced to a fine of 1,600 DM in March 1998 because of his consequent decision also to refuse to perfom the unarmed substitute service, which he sees as a service for war as well. In Germany persons who perform substitute service and therefore are recognised as „conscientious objectors" by the state in times of war can be mobilised to support the armed forces as well as to keep state and government functions running. As well as conscripts, civil servants are part of the total defence conception of Germany.

At present total objectors in Germany are in the average sentenced to 6 month prison. The highest possible punishment for „leaving the flag" (§ 16 military punishment law) or „leaving the service" (§ 53 law on civilian service) is 5 years of prison.

Not only are total objectors within the military subject to imprisonment for two or three month's without any legal rights, i.e. the right of legal defence, before they are put in front of a civil court, they also have to face a new call-up. According to the judgements of the German constitutional court, total objectors will be called-up again, if the verdict doesn't explicitly state that the objection was a decision out of reasons of conscience.

Marko Langert too received a second call-up from the Civilian Service Administration and now faces an illegal second punishment (according to Art. 103 III of the German constitution, which prohibits a second trial because of the same accusation).
The trial starts on 1. December 1999 at 9 am. Amtsgericht Leipzig, Bernhard-Göring-Strasse 64, 04275 Leipzig GERMANY
Marko Langert, Tarostraße 14, 04 103 Leipzig, email
Judge at AG Leipzig Ms Walther, Tel.: +49-341/49 40 3 17
Lawyer Jörg Eichler, Tel./Fax: +49-801 49 89, email
Lawyer Torsten Froese, Tel.: +49-69 / 53 31 05 oder +49-69 / 498 03 94, Fax: +49-69 / 4 99 00 07, email