THENS (EJP)---A militant Greek neo-Nazi was sentenced to a 14-month suspended sentence on Thursday for inciting to hatred with his book denying the Holocaust.
After four days of trial, Costas Plevris, a lawyer, writer and presenter of a marginal TV station, was found guilty of inciting to hatred with his 1,400 page book titled “Jews: the Whole Truth” denying the Holocaust and containing offensive references to Jews.
In his book, the author writes: “To begin with, I declare that I am a Nazi, a fascist, a racist, an anti-democrat, an anti-Semite. Jews are mortal enemies and deserve the firing squad."
It was Greece’s first such trial under a anti-discrimination law passed in 1979.
Once Plevris’ book was published in May 2006, the Greek Helsinki Monitor, an NGO that monitors human rights in Greece, immediately filled a complaint against him under the law.
Leaders of the umbrella group Central Board of Jewish communities in Greece (CJBG) testified at the court that the book has led to a spike in attacks on Jewish monuments in the country.
"After the book was published, attacks against Jewish sites increased," said Moses Costantinis, head of the Board, said.
On trial together with Plevris, the publisher, the editor and a journalist of the extreme-right weekly newspaper “Elefteros Kosmos” were found not guilty.
Benjamin Albalas, head of the Jewish Community of Athens, said before the court that the book "incites violence and encourages people to kill us."
Defence lawyers said their clients were being persecuted for freely expressing their views.
The Jewish community saw the trial as a key test of the Greek authorities’ determination to deal with anti-Semitism and Holocaust denial.