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Netherlands / Amsterdam Court of Appeal / 23-2197-09

Regular and intentional insults on website

Deciding Body type:
National Court/Tribunal
Deciding Body:
Court of Justice Amsterdam
Decision date:

Key facts of the case:

A 30-year old blogger has regularly published insulting texts about Muslims and Turks on his website called ‘Misdefinition’.  On 7 April 2009 the Court in Haarlem acquitted the defendant because the court was not convinced that the utterances referred to Muslims or Turks in general. In an appeal, the Amsterdam District Court ruled that the blogger regularly and intentionally insulted a group of people based on their race and/or religion.

Results (sanctions) and key consequences or implications of the case:

The blogger was sentenced to a 500 euro fine. The implications of the case are important for the demarcation of the potential conflict between one’s individual freedom of expression (on the Internet) and the prohibition of discrimination based on ethnic origin or religion.