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Spanish rapper gets prison sentence for lyrics glamorizing terrorism

Europe
20.02.2018
By our dpa-correspondent and Europe Online    auf Facebook posten  Auf Twitter posten  
Madrid (dpa) - A rapper from the Balearic island of Mallorca has to spend three and a half years in prison because his songs glamorized terrorism, threatened and insulted the Spanish crown and called for the death of politicians.

The Supreme Court in Madrid confirmed the guilty verdict and prison sentence on Tuesday for Josep Miquel Arenas, 24, who performs under the name Valtonyc.

Arenas had challenged an earlier verdict by a regional court in the Balearics and appealed to the higher court on the grounds of artistic freedom and freedom of opinion.

Among other lyrics that featured in the court case, the rapper called for the armed occupation of a palace in Palma de Mallorca where the Spanish royals spend their summer holidays. He also said regional politicians "deserved an atom bomb" and that people "wanted the deaths of these pigs."

The language of the rap is "extreme, provocative, allegorical and symbolic," Arenas had said. There were several demonstrations in his defence on Mallorca.

The judges in Madrid said on Tuesday one only has to read the texts of the songs "to grasp the severity of the crime."

Arenas may appeal the verdict, which has been widely criticized by politicians mostly on the left and by several organizations, before the Constitutional Court, but it is thought unlikely that such an appeal will succeed.

 

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