Far-right MP Ordered to Pay Fine by Court for Statements on Roma

Far-right MP Ordered to Pay Fine by Court for Statements on Roma

Banska Bystrica, April 16 (TASR) – Far-right Kotleba-People’s Party Our Slovakia (LSNS) MP Milan M. was ordered by the Specialised Court in Banska Bystrica on Monday to pay a fine of €5,000, which, if unpaid, will result in a six-month imprisonment.

Both the MP and the responsible prosecutor appealed against the verdict, albeit for different reasons – Milan M. considers it unfair, while the prosecutor views it as too lenient.

Milan M. is facing charges for what the prosecutor believes were racist statements he made on Radio Frontinus in 2016.

Meanwhile, the far-right MP defended himself by claiming that his statement of “Gypsy terror in eastern Slovakia” was about the high crime rate in settlements inhabited by asocial people, and when he was speaking about the need for stricter crime accountability for children, he meant all children, not only Roma.

Milan M. before the court on Monday reiterated that he knows “many decent Gypsies” from eastern Slovakia and he’s been living with members of this ethnic minority since he was young without any tension. He stressed that on Radio Frontinus he was speaking about “asocial people who have opted for parasitising on the social system as their way of earning their living”.

In addition, a childhood friend of Milan M. appeared at the trial on Monday who described himself as a Roma, testifying that they have had good relations for years and even spent a holiday in Italy together. He said that he wasn’t offended by Milan M.’s radio statements, as he knew that they weren’t about all Roma, but only those with asocial behaviour.

Several LSNS sympathisers came to support Milan M., but they were kept away from the court building by the police, so they withdrew to an adjacent street. Milan M. went to see them after the trial, complaining about the verdict as evidence that Slovakia is a “fascist state”.