Malta courts punish online racism with fines

29 November 2016

Key points about this news item Malta courts punish online racism with fines

Great news that the Malta courts have fined online racists


Well done Maltese courts and police for attacking online racism

The courts of Malta have fined two men for posting racist comments on Facebook in what is believed to be a first in the country. Eric Cuschieri and Christopher Pisani were both found guilty of inciting racism and are expected to reply.


The two men were both fined €3,000 for inciting racial hatred through their social media posts that were spotted by the police and reported to prosecutors.


The post on Facebook, posted in February 2015, showed a man in a bed in Mater Dei hospital, attached to a drip. The image was uploaded to the Facebook Group Daqshekk għall-immigrazzjoni llegali f'Malta ('No more illegal immigration to Malta').


As you can imagine, the image in that particular group attracted a lot of interest and posts, none of which were wishing the poor man a swift recovery. In fact, the majority of posts were either complaints about the cost of his treatment or worse, inciting people to cause him more harm.


The comment on the original post read “This black is taking a Maltese spot at Mater Dei Hospital, paid for by you and me and personally meeting with ministers." Replies varied from the usual idiotic to more sinister, such as that from Mr Cuschieri which said, “put acid in his [the patient's] drip". Mr Pisani urged people to “burn him”.


Integra Foundation director Maria Pisani commented, “Inciting racial hatred online is a crime, and I am very happy that police took action and prosecuted."






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