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A Budapest appeals court sentenced the secondary defendant in the so-called “antifa case” to one year and ten months in prison in a binding ruling on Tuesday. The German national had previously pleaded guilty to the charges and waived his right to a trial. On Jan. 29, the Budapest Municipal Court sentenced the defendant to three years in a maximum security prison for attempted battery and ruled that he be expelled from Hungary for a period of five years. According to the first-instance sentence, the defendant was a member of “an organisation of young adults sympathising with far-left ideologies” who had planned on “taking the ideological fight to militant far-right sympathisers who espoused fascist views” by carrying out violent attacks and taking part in demonstrations and protests. The court said the members of the organisation had travelled to Budapest to take part in coordinated attacks in connection with the anniversary of the Nazi breakout of the Castle District during the siege of the capital on Feb. 11, 1945.
On February 9-10 last year, the members of the organisation used telescopic stun batons and pepper spray to attack several people whom they picked because they were wearing clothing indicating far-right views. The prosecution appealed for a harsher, and the defence for a lighter sentence. On Tuesday, the Budapest Court of Appeals reduced the first-instance three-year prison sentence to one year and ten months. On May 15, the appeals court decided to release the case’s primary defendant into criminal supervision on bail of 16 million forints (EUR 41,600). The police said earlier that five coordinated attacks had been carried out on Feb. 9-11 in 2023 in Budapest, leaving four victims with serious and another five with light injuries. Three suspects were arrested on Feb 11, including a 38-year-old Italian woman, a 29-year-old German man and a 26-year-old German woman.