This has been a topic of public debate in Germany all year, and (as far as I have followed the debate and the legal questions involved) the reaction from lawmakers has been one I find rather popularistic and ignorant of the already existing laws. The new laws now being put on the books have several shortcomings and strike me as not workable in at least some sections. The whole public debate here has plaid out as if a lot of what happened during the New Year's night wasn't criminal under existing laws, completely ignoring the fact that the problem is not the current laws, but rather catching the perpetrators and proving their guilt. The new laws will not change that one little bit and strike me as an overreaction by politicians who don't want to look "soft on crime".
Indeed, as far as I know, Germany's laws are not particularly lax on this type of thing. Some say officials are turning a blind eye to it on purpose, so as not to ruffle feathers they want to leave as is. I don't know how much stock can be placed in that and how much of that is simply anti-government, conspiracy theories, but there you go. Wouldn't surprise me either way it goes.