Islamophobia is a crime according to the prosecutor's office in Belfort (90). Retired teacher of classics, president of the association Résistance Républicaine and collaborator on the site Riposte Laïque, seen as close to the extreme right, Christine Tasin was charged with "incitement to racial hatred" and on Friday was sentenced to a fine of 3000 euros, including 1500 suspended.
Christine Tasin made the remarks for which she was charged at Belfort on 15 October 2013, during a discussion with members of the Muslim community. She described Islam as a "saloperie" [tn: hard to find a word in English that perfectly captures this but it's something like (filth, muck, cesspit) with a suggestion of a con trick added in], in front of a mobile abattoir installed for the ritual sacrifice of Aïd el-Kébir. The discussion was filmed and put online on YouTube.
"I'm an islamophobe,
"Yes I'm an islamophobe and so? The hatred of Islam, I'm proud of it. Islam is a saloperie [filth] (...), it's a danger for France", declared Christine Tasin to members of the Muslim community and the Coordination contre le Racisme et l'Islamophobie (CRI) [tn: Committee Against Racism and Islamophobia], who replied that her speech was inspired by "hatred of religion".
The members of the CRI filed a complaint.
At the hearing on 2 July the accused presented herself wearing blue, white and red and acknowledged her remarks. The prosecutor's office in Belfort, judging that her remarks were of "a nature to inspire a rejection of Muslims by describing them as a danger to France" had requested a sentence of three months' imprisonment suspended and a fine of 3000 euros.
Despite her conviction, this Friday Christine Tasin published a video where she denounces the verdict, describing the Belfort court as an "Islamic tribunal", which she accuses of "applying sharia (Islamic law) in France". She has also announced that she will appeal her conviction, which her lawyer has confirmed to the AFP.