The leader of a neo-Nazi group in southern Sweden, jailed for beating five men at a gay rights party, lost his appeal yesterday.
National Socialist Front (NSF) leader Simon Lindberg, had the three month sentence handed down by a district court confirmed by the Court of Appeal in Malmo.
The 24-year old and an associate entered an event held by the Swedish Federation for Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual and Transgender Rights (RFSL), who had gathered at the organisation’s headquarters to watch the Eurovision Song Contest in May last year.
An initial verbal argument quickly became physical with several RFSL members claiming they were threatened with knives and attacked with knuckledusters.
Following his initial court hearing in April last year, Lindberg said the verdict was “political” and commented to news agency TT:
“The lay judges were swayed by who I am, and have not judged professionally. There is no evidence, and in such cases we have a principle of justice which says that one should acquit, not convict.”
Although both Lindberg and his friend both admit to being at the scene, Lindberg claims he went there to discuss politics and argues that he himself was attacked by RFSL members.
Lindberg was convicted of criminal damage, acting as an accessory to abuse and acting as an accessory to unlawful threats, according to The Local.
His 28-year old accomplice is serving a six month sentence for assault, threatening behaviour and careless driving.
The National Socialist Front was founded in 1994 and cites the abolition of democracy, the repatriation of immigrants and the implementation of scientific racism as its main goals.
The organisation, which became a political party in 1999, ran in elections at a national level in 2006 and received 0.03% of the vote, short of the 4% needed for a party to sit in the Swedish parliament.
This NSG demonstration features Lindberg: