Born in Berlin, Roeder attended the National Political Institute of Education in Plön. As a teenage soldier, he participated of the Battle of Berlin in 1945. After the Second World War he was for a time a member of Germany's CDU party. After leaving the party he forged ties with the far-right political scene in Germany and abroad, including the Ku Klux Klan. Roeder's career was marked by an abundance of criminal charges, including resistance against state authority, and battery. In 1980 the Deutsche Aktionsgruppen ("German Action Groups"), a neo-Nazi organisation founded by Roeder, carried out attacks against buildings that housed foreign workers and asylum seekers. Two people were murdered in these attacks. Roeder was classified as a terrorist by German legal authorities as a result of these activities.
In 1997 the British current affairs program Panorama said that in 1995, Roeder had appeared, by invitation, as a speaker at the German military's officer training academy in Hamburg. This scandal, as well as the fact that Roeder had received financial donations from the military, led to the sacking of the academy's commander and the instatement of Rear-Admiral Rudolf Lange as his replacement, with the goal of restoring the good reputation of the academy.
In 1997, Roeder stood as the candidate of the far-right NPD in Stralsund in Mecklenburg-Vorpommern during the parliamentary elections, promoting himself as "Chancellor alternative 1998", but was unsuccessful.
Roeder died on 30 July 2014 at the age of 85.
Because of his integral role in a terrorist organisation Roeder was sentenced to 13 years in prison in 1982. Roeder had planned a fire bomb attack which killed two Vietnamese refugees in August 1980. He was released in 1990, after serving two-thirds of his sentence, for good behaviour and a perceived social rehabilitation.
In 1996 Roeder, together with other far-right extremists, perpetrated an attack on an exhibition in Erfurt detailing the role of the Wehrmacht in Nazi Germany, for which he was charged with property damage and fined DM-4,500. After being sentenced to prison by the state courts of Schwerin and Rostock under Germany's Volksverhetzung law (incitement to hatred), and for other crimes, he was given a further ten months in September 2004 by the state court of Frankfurt for contempt of the state. In February 2005 a further sentencing for the same crime was passed by the court of Schwalmstadt. On 12 May 2005, he began a prison sentence in Gießen, but he was released shortly after on health grounds.
- „Porno-Anwalt“ als Größe der Neonazis Archived 20 December 2014 at WebCite Bergsträßer Anzeiger, 7 July 2007. (Large pdf) (in German)
- Anti-Roeder-Arbeitskreis, NSDAP-Propagandisten unter der Lupe – Dokumentation, Hamburg 1978, p. 20 (German)
- Detlef Junker, Philipp Gassert and Wilfried Mausbach (2004). The United States and Germany in the era of the Cold War, 1945-1990. 2. Cambridge University Press. pp. 497–498. ISBN 9780521834209.
- David Charters (1994). The deadly sin of terrorism: its effect on democracy and civil liberty in six countries. Greenwood. p. 47. ISBN 9780313289644.
- Lee Griffith (2004). The war on terrorism and the terror of God. Wm. B. Eerdmans. p. 53. ISBN 9780802828606.
- Bundeswehr will im Fall Roeder hart durchgreifen Die Welt, 8 December 1997. (in German)
- Rühe zieht Konsequenzen im Fall Roeder Rüdiger Moniac, Die Welt, 9 December 1997. (in German)
- Volker Rühe: Auf Kampfstation Focus, 15 December 1997. (in German)
- Ein notorisch Rechtsextremer will nach Bonn Andreas Baumann, Die Welt, 18 September 1998. (in German)
- "Rechtsextremist Roeder starb 85-jährig in Neukirchen | Politik" (in German). Hna.de. Retrieved 1 August 2014.
- Rand C. Lewis (1996). The Neo-Nazis and German Unification. Greenwood. p. 25. ISBN 9780275956387. Preview at Google Books.
- "Four German neo-Nazis sentenced". UPI. 28 June 1982. Retrieved 24 December 2018.
- Die Wehrmachtsausstellung zwischen Krawallen und Kritik Der Spiegel, 27 November 2001. (in German)
- Volksverhetzung: Neonazi Roeder muss ins Gefängnis Der Spiegel, 29 June 2001. (in German)
- German Neo-Nazi sentenced to two years in prison Archived 6 July 2011 at the Wayback Machine ORF, 30 January 2002.
- Bewährung wegen schlechter Gesundheit Archived 7 September 2012 at archive.today, 13 November 2009 (in German)
- Die "KRR"-FAQ - Archiv 2005 (Januar bis März) (German)
- Much of this article is translated from the German Wikipedia article of 5 March 2007.