Sunday, March 6, 2016

Germany: Lawyers file criminal complaint against Mark Zuckerberg for antisemitic Facebook messages

Via IBTimes (h/t CFCA):
German lawyers have filed a criminal complaint against Facebook founder and CEO Mark Zuckerberg over anti-Semitic speech on the social networking site. There was no immediate response to the complaint from Zuckerberg.

Germany has strict laws against hate speech given its experience under Adolf Hitler. It is illegal to incite hatred and to circulate or display Nazi symbols in Germany and if Zuckerberg is found guilty on those charges, he could face a fine of up to $163m (€150m).

A spokeswoman for the Hamburg prosecutors told Fortune that they are still examining the merit of the lawyers' complaint before deciding whether or not to proceed against Zuckerberg.

"I think Facebook has changed German society — not for the good," Bavarian lawyer Chan-jo Jun told Vice News. "I wanted to find out if the German legal system would prevail against an American company."

Jun has compiled a list of more than 300 Facebook pages and posts that contain swastikas and other Nazi-related images as well as calls for violence against the Middle Eastern and North African immigrants who have flooded Germany over the past year.

Facebook has removed some of them from the internet, but many others are still up. One post depicts President Obama wearing a yarmulke and Orthodox Jewish-style side curls with the label "Nobel Zionism Prize." An accompanying message asks: "Why is this man is not sitting in a concentration camp?"
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