Major German supporter of Israel arrested for drug possession

Marcy Oster

BERLIN (JTA) — One of Israel’s strongest political supporters in Germany was found with illegal drugs during a police search.

Volker Beck, the Green Party’s parliamentary spokesman for interior affairs and religion, and president of the German-Israeli Parliamentary Friendship Group of the Bundestag since 2014, will give up both roles, a spokesman from his office told the Spiegel Online magazine. The tabloid Bild reported that the substance found was likely crystal meth.

Beck, 55, who had addressed 150 members of the Rabbinical Conference of Europe visiting Germany’s capital on Monday, was subjected to a search Tuesday while on foot in the city and did not resist, Berlin state prosecutor Martin Steltner told Spiegel Online. The prosecutor did not confirm reports about the substance itself, which is undergoing a chemical evaluation. Beck reportedly was found with 0.6 grams of the substance.

In a statement, Beck said he had “always supported a liberal drug policy” and that his attorney would address pending charges.

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