Six months probation – Hitler memes sent: Carinthian (17) convicted


A 17-year-old schoolboy was sentenced on Wednesday to a six-month suspended prison term at the regional court in Klagenfurt for involvement in National Socialism. From 2019 to 2021, the youngster had increasingly shared National Socialist content in various WhatsApp groups, as well as in a far-right group from Germany, which he allegedly discovered through video games. The verdict is not final.

The defendant pleaded guilty to the jury. He confessed to regularly sending Nazi image files on WhatsApp between the ages of 14 and 16. It mainly concerned photos or memes with captions such as “Hitler did nothing wrong” (Hitler did nothing wrong, ed.) or “Hail my German comrade”. Some of the photos went to his friends on WhatsApp, some ended up on far-right German online forums.

Note from Germany
Police in Paderborn, North Rhine-Westphalia, became aware of the 17-year-old after investigating such a forum. The teenager himself claimed in court that he had not thought about what he had sent and that he never wanted to downplay National Socialism: “I wanted to belong to the group of friends, so sending pictures like this is somehow normal no one has thought about it.” He said he hasn’t sent anything since the first contact with the police.

Lack of awareness of the Nazi era
His lawyer argued that today’s young people often have little or no awareness of the Nazi era and therefore often cannot judge what is fun and what is serious. Due to his young age and his previous clean criminal record, the boy was sentenced to a six-month suspended prison sentence. He was also asked to participate in the ‘Dialogue instead of Hate’ training program, which aims to raise awareness of issues such as discrimination. The 17-year-old accepted the verdict immediately, the Public Prosecution Service gave no explanation.

Source: Krone


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