BERLIN (AP) — A prominent German far-right politician who plans to run for the governor’s job in an eastern state later this year went on trial for the second time Monday on charges of knowingly using a Nazi slogan at a political event.

Björn Höcke was fined 13,000 euros ($13,900) last month for using symbols of an unconstitutional organization, a verdict that his lawyers are appealing against. The trial that opened Monday at the state court in Halle involves a second alleged use of the same slogan.

The first case centered on a speech in Merseburg in May 2021 in which Höcke, a high-profile figure in the Alternative for Germany party, used the phrase “Everything for Germany!”

Judges agreed with prosecutors’ argument that he was aware of its origin as a slogan of the Nazis’ SA stormtroopers. Höcke, a former history teacher, has said he’s innocent and argued it was an “everyday saying.” His lawyers are appealing against the verdict.

The second count against Höcke was added to his first trial shortly before it opened, but judges then decided to try it separately because his defense team had recently changed.

Prosecutors allege that he repeated the offense at an Alternative for Germany, or AfD, event in Gera last December, “in certain knowledge” that using the slogan is a criminal offense.

They say that Höcke said “Everything for …” and encouraged the audience to shout “Germany!”

Alternative for Germany has built a strong core of support, particularly in the formerly communist east — including the state of Thuringia, where Höcke plans to lead his party’s campaign in an election Sept. 1. Its strength in that region helped propel it to a second-place finish in the European Parliament election earlier this month, in which it took 15.9% of the vote despite recent scandals and setbacks.

The charge of using symbols of an unconstitutional organization can carry a fine or up to three years in prison. Two court sessions have been scheduled for the trial, the second on Wednesday.

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