Racism in Germany Sentence in Racist Attack Slammed for Leniency

The attack on eight Indian men by a mob of Germans last August has resulted in the first conviction. An 18-year-old man has been ordered to pay €600 for shouting xenophobic abuse. A representative of the victims says the sentence is too lenient.


Gurminder Singh was among a group of eight Indian men chased and beaten up by a group of youths in Mügeln during a street festival in August.
DDP

Gurminder Singh was among a group of eight Indian men chased and beaten up by a group of youths in Mügeln during a street festival in August.

An 18-year-old German man has been ordered to pay €600 ($890) to a charity in the first conviction resulting from an attack on eight Indian menin August by a group of around 50 Germans, some of whom were chanting "Foreigners out!"

The man had admitted shouting xenophobic comments during the attack in the eastern town of Mügeln, the Leipzig state prosecutor's office said. Prosecutors had demanded he pay €1,800 and may appeal against the sentencing, handed down by a court in the town of Oschatz.

The case made nationwide headlines and highlighted the problem of racism and far-right attacks on minorities in eastern Germany.

A 23-year-old man is expected to go on trial next week charged with smashing the window of the pizza restaurant where the Indian men sought refuge after getting into a fight during a street festival.

The court ruling against the 18-year-old was criticized by a representative of the Indian men. Marianne Thum, who works for a group that helps the victims of racist attacks, said: "This really makes me angry."

She said the €600 fine which the man has been ordered to pay to a children's charity was far too lenient, and she complained that the victims had not been informed that the court case was taking place.

She said the fine should have at least been paid to an organisation that combats right-wing extremism. "That might have caused the defendants some pain," she said.

cro/ddp

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