Thirty-nine people have been detained in connection with a march in Germany which paid tribute to the death of a Nazi official, Berlin police said.

More than 500 neo-Nazis on Saturday had attempted to march to the site of the former prison in Berlin's western district of Spandau, where Hitler deputy Rudolf Hess died. Instead, left-wing groups and local residents blocked them.

Hess got a life sentence during the Nuremberg trials. He later hanged himself in 1987 at the Spandau prison when he was 93 years old.

Organizers of the march were informed they couldn't glorify Hess or the Nazi regime, the New York Times reported. They also couldn't reportedly have drums, torches or weapons.


Thirty-five of those detained belonged to the march, while four were taking part in the counter-protest, police said Sunday.

Twelve of the protesters are being investigated for displaying forbidden symbols. Others detained are being investigated for breach of the peace, assault, resisting arrest, drug offenses and breaking the law on public assembly.

The march was accompanied by about 1,000 police officers and passed peacefully for the most part. There were several skirmishes between both sides with no reports of serious injuries, the Times said.

The Associated Press contributed to this report.