A 23 year-old Afghan man who posted anti-Semitic and anti-Israel comments on his Facebook page has been sentenced by a court in Upper Austria to a year’s conditional sentence and ordered to pay a €720 fine.
He was also found guilty of possessing an illegal pepper spray.
The 23-year-old man, who speaks German well, said he hadn’t intended to incite hatred against Jews but had hoped to get attention and lots of ‘likes’ on his Facebook page.
He posted a picture of Adolf Hitler with the words “I could have killed all the Jews, but I left some alive so you would know why I was killing them,” and another image of a skull and crossbones and the words “Keep calm and f*** Israel”.
He told the prosecution that he had only uploaded the images to see how many ‘likes’ he could get.
His lawyer told the jury that his client came to Austria as an unaccompanied minor when he was 16 and was granted asylum. His mother has since fled from Afghanistan and the defence said that the man’s “education has been neglected”.
The jury found him guilty of breaking Austria’s Prohibition Act, which aims to suppress any potential revival of Nazism and bans the deliberate belittlement of Nazi atrocities.
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