Polish Border Guard Acquitted on Racism Charge with the Help of a Judge
Polish newspaper “Gazeta Wyborcza” has reported that a Polish border guard was acquitted from racism charges against him after a ridiculous decision by a judge.
According to the information, Tomasz E., 34 year old senior warrant officer from the Podlaski Border Guard Unit, wrote several entries on the discussion forum “4lomza.pl” about the Chechen asylum seekers in Poland from October 2009 to May 2011. In his entries, he described Chechen asylum seekers as “lazy bones Caucasians”, “followers of pedophile” and “parasitic scum”. Due to his entries, Łomża based Polish NGO the Fondacja Ocalenie (Foundation Salvation) appealed to the Białystok District Penal Court considering his words as hatred and insults against ethnic Chechens.
The defendant claimed that he isn’t the author of these entries; moreover these words are not insults, because there are several examples in the Polish media where columnists used these words in their articles.
In her review, Judge Alina Krejza-Aleksiejuk decided that there is no crime in the entries. She explained her opinion on the appeal that the authors of these entries can be anybody, because there isn’t exact evidence besides his user name; on the other hand the report from the linguistics doesn’t reflect that the defendant’s words include insults. The judge claims that in order to speak about hatred or insults, it must be intentional, but in this case, there aren’t because he wouldn’t know that his words would be taken as insults, for these reasons it must be considered as freedom of expression. However, the judgment is not final and Fondacja Ocalenie will appeal to a higher court against this decision.
*Text was written by Waynakh Online and edited by Michael Capobianco