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November 15, 2019
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Hungarian Supreme Court says camerawoman who kicked asylum-seekers committed misdemeanor and can no longer be prosecuted

2.11.2018 13:19
Hungary was shaken in September 2015 by a brief video taken at its border with Serbia showing a camerawoman for Hungary's N1TV station kicking young refugee boys and girls and tripping a refugee carrying a child as they made their way through a Hungarian Police cordon. (PHOTO:  YouTube.com)
Hungary was shaken in September 2015 by a brief video taken at its border with Serbia showing a camerawoman for Hungary's N1TV station kicking young refugee boys and girls and tripping a refugee carrying a child as they made their way through a Hungarian Police cordon. (PHOTO: YouTube.com)

Agence France-Presse reports that the Hungarian Supreme Court has effectively acquitted Petra László, the camerawoman who kicked asylum-seekers in 2015 at the country's border with Serbia, reversing lower court rulings in the highly-publicized case. Those courts had put László on probation for three years.

According to the Supreme Court, the camerawoman's actions should have been categorized as a misdemeanor, not a felony. The case must now be closed because the statute of limitations for a misdemeanor proceeding has expired.

In September 2015, while filming near a gathering place for migrants at the Röszke border crossing, László kicked at a little girl and young man who were fleeing along with 400 other refugees. She then kicked at the arm of another man who was holding a small child.

Footage of the incident was published online and sparked international attention. On the basis of that evidence, criminal charges were brought against her.

László was working at the time for the online television station N1 TV, which is close to Jobbik, a nationalist, radical party. Immediately after the incident became known, N1 TV fired the camerawoman.

Two lower courts found her guilty of grossly disrupting public order and she was on probation for three years. The Supreme Court decision has now overturned those verdicts.

ČTK, voj, translated by Gwendolyn Albert
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Hungary, Racism, refugee, Xenophobia



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