Berlin – A Berlin court convicted Udo Voigt, the leader of the far-right National Democratic Party of Germany (NPD), on sedition charges Friday and handed him a suspended seven-month prison sentence.
The court ruled that he was responsible for a racist NPD calendar, which called for Germany’s national football team to be made up of whites only and insulted a black player on the team.
He was convicted of criminal insult and a sedition provision making it a crime to stir up hatred. The district court also convicted two other NPD national executive officials, handing them suspended prison sentences of seven months and 10 months.
Their nationalist and anti-foreigner party, which has many neo-Nazi supporters, is represented in two of Germany’s 16 state parliaments, but has never won seats at federal level.
All three men were also ordered to donate 2,000 euros (2,700 dollars) apiece to the UN children’s fund UNICEF.
The front page of the fold-up planner calendar showed a shirt marked with the player number of Patrick Owomoyela on the German team at the World Cup tournament in 2006. A slogan that called for a whites-only team was an implicit insult to the black player.
The party is in serious financial trouble after suffering a fine of 2.2 million euros (2.8 million dollars) for accounting irregularities. An attempt to ban the party was thrown out by Germany’s constitutional court in 2003. (dpa)