26 April 2012
To condemn the thought of an individual it is not the task of the Court and based on this affirmation the Audiencia Nacional (Spanish Court) has sustained the acquittal of nine Ceuti citizens charged with terrorist practices in the operation Dune (operation started in 2006 by the judge Baltasar Garzon accusing the individuals of being a jihadist cell with connections to the Al-Qaeda).
“The terrorist act is more than the expression of radical ideas, because freedom of expression and dissemination of ideas, thoughts or doctrines is a feature of the democratic system and must protect even those who disagree and advocate a system change other democratic political system, provided, that defense of these ideas will not be carried by violent means, ” concluded the judge.
The acquittal of Ceuta occurs, stating, “it is not enough to prove that the defendants think a certain way or that they contact or are related to others of the same ideology, it is necessary to show that they have decided to take action and that was not proven.
February 3 2011
The ongoing trial of MP and Freedom Party leader Geert Wilders may be delayed. The anti-Islam politician is on trial for charges of inciting hatred and discrimination against Muslims. Initially the Public Prosecutor’s Office declined to prosecute Wilders for his anti-Islamic statements. When a number of minority organizations complained, the court supported them and ordered the Public Prosecutor’s office to prepare a case, which subsequently collapsed due to irregularities involving judges. The trial was set to resume on Monday, however a lawyer representing groups opposing Wilders has gone to the appeal court to object to the behavior of the Prosecution Department which called for Wilders’ acquittal. Speaking in reaction to a media report, he commented: “the public prosecutor cannot take the position that Mr. Wilders is not liable to punishment.”
Dutch lawyer Mohammed Enait has been acquitted of contempt of court by the Bar Association’s disciplinary council.
Enait argues that as a Muslim his religious belief maintains that everyone is equal, and thus that he will not stand during court cases when the judge enters the courtroom.
Enait was also reprimanded for wearing an Islamic head covering during sessions and for showing contempt of a judge in a TV talkshow.
He was acquitted on all three charges on Friday.
A Belgian appeals court acquitted seven far-leftist Turkish militants of charges of belonging to a terrorist organization, and gave three of the acquitted a suspended sentence for illegal arms possession. The ruling came in a retrial that was ordered after the first trial was declared unfair for technical reasons. Their arrest followed the discovery of an arms cache on the Belgian coast; however, the judge ruled that the group had no intention of committing terrorist acts in Belgium. Dozens of Turkish supporters applauded and cheered upon the reading of the verdict.
The cultural association _Atlas’ which represents North African immigrants in the province of Lleda, has requested to protest the government for 13 days. The protect stems from anger over the acquittal of three men who were on trial over the gruesome killing of Oulhadi Hamid, a 26 year old Moroccan citizen whose body was found in a field in January of 2005. Relatives and friends of Hamid are dissatisfied with the acquittal and are preparing to appeal the ruling, citing the necessity for punishment, and a discriminatory court decision.