Hundreds of protesters have taken to the streets as a migrant gang are held for the four hour rape of 18-year-old girl outside a nightclub.
The Syrians between the ages of 19 and 29, along with a 25-year-old German, were arrested in Freiburg on Sunday in the south-western German state of Baden-Wuerttebmberg.
Freiburg's Mayor, Martin Horn, urged the AfD-organized protesters to remain 'peaceful' and refrain from 'further violence.'
Officials said the ordeal took place in bushes outside the venue after one of the suspects sold the victim ecstasy and bought her a drink on October 14.
'I hope the demonstrations will be peaceful and will not lead to further violence and hatred,' Freiburg's Mayor told DPA news agency. 'In Freiburg, there is no room for criminals and such terrible crimes.'
Around 1,500 counter-protesters turned out to demonstrate against the AfD who they accuse of exploiting the tragedy, according to DW.
The main suspect allegedly set upon her outside the nightclub and then called on others to do the same.
Police are investigating whether the drink may have been spiked with an unknown substance.
Local newspaper Bild identified the main suspect as 21-year-old Syrian Majd H. and some of his accomplices have been named as 19-year-old Ahmed Al H., 24-year-old Muhammad Al H., and 20-year-old Muhanad M.
According to Bild, Majd H., who is pictured with a machine gun on his social media profile, came to Germany in 2014 and has already had one conviction in the European country that took him in.
They quoted his father as saying: 'Majd became more aggressive after we fled and he has been in trouble with the police. He already has one conviction because he hurt someone.'
According to local media, the other suspects lived mostly in asylum centres and were known to the police for other alleged criminal offences.
The horrific story will bolster Angela Merkel's critics, as support for her coalition has wavered in the face of the migrant crisis.
Merkel who has held the Chancellorship since 2005 is stepping down at the end of her term in 2021.
Her coalition faced collapse after permitting the inflow of nearly a million refugees and asylum seekers as part of her 'Willkommenskultur' - welcoming culture, in 2015.
A police spokeswoman told local media that they are still looking for other possible perpetrators after finding evidence at the crime scene indicating that more people took part.
Freiburg was already reeling from the rape and murder of 19-year-old Maria Ladenburger, the daughter of an EU official.
Afghan asylum seeker Hussein Khavari was jailed for life earlier this year after he raped the student who worked as a refugee helper.
In June this year, local daily 'Schwarzwalder Bode' reported that a series of migrant sex attacks have brought fear to the local population of 226,000.
The newspaper wrote: 'An unprecedented series of sex offences has shaken the public's sense of security.'
The paper was backed up by Freiburg police spokesman Dirk Klose, who said: 'To my knowledge, we have never had so many offences of this kind before.'
This article has been adapted from its original source.
© Associated Newspapers Ltd.