Home > Anything Else, Radical Islam > Free Speech Found Guilty by Europe, Supreme Court Declares Criticism of Islam a Crime Punishable By Imprisonment

Free Speech Found Guilty by Europe, Supreme Court Declares Criticism of Islam a Crime Punishable By Imprisonment


By Soeren Kern, Gatestone Institute – “Lars Hedegaard, the president of the Danish Free Press Society, has been acquitted by the Danish Supreme Court on charges of ‘hate speech’ for critical comments he made about Islam.

The verdict, however represents only a partial victory for free speech in a Europe that is being stifled by politically correct restrictions on free speech, particularly on issues related to Islam.

Although Hedegaard was acquitted, it was on a legal technicality; in its ruling, the Supreme Court stressed that the substance of the charges against Hedegaard — public criticism of Islam, — is still a crime punishable by imprisonment.

Hedegaard’s legal problems began in December 2009, when he said in a taped interview that there was a high incidence of child rape and domestic violence in areas dominated by Muslim culture. Although Hedegaard insisted that he did not intend to accuse all Muslims or even the majority of Muslims of such crimes, Denmark’s thought police were incensed at such effrontery: the Danish public prosecutor’s office declared that Hedegaard was guilty of violating Article 266b of the Danish penal code, a catch-all provision that Danish elites use to enforce politically correct speech codes.

The infamous Article 266b states: ‘Whoever publicly or with the intent of public dissemination issues a pronouncement or other communication by which a group of persons are threatened, insulted or denigrated due to their race, skin color, national or ethnic origin, religion or sexual orientation is liable to a fine or incarceration for up to two years.’

In January 2011, a Danish lower court acquitted Hedegaard of any wrongdoing. But public prosecutors appealed that verdict and in May 2011, a Danish superior court found Hedegaard guilty of hate speech in accordance with Article 266b because he ‘ought to have known’ that his statements regarding family rape in Muslim families were intended for public dissemination.” Read more.

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