Freedom of Speech vs. Metropolitan Court: 0-1

Yesterday, the Court of Székesfehérvár has returned its first instance decision in the lawsuit against members of the board of the Labour Party. Freedom of Speech lost….Read on for the deatails!

As we have previously reported, a report by the President of the Metropolitan Court against board members of the Labour Party has resulted in a criminal lawsuit. According to the report and also the arraignment, seven members of the board have committed the act of defamation. The party has issued a declaration with regard to a previous verdict of the Metropolitan Court, in which, besides other things, members of the board claim that the Metropolitan Court’s decision was ’political’. The chairman of the board was represented by an HCLU attorney, because we feel, that the declaration drafts an opinion on the verdict, which cannot be grounds for initiation of a criminal lawsuit.

It is the HCLU’s opinion, that in a democratic and constitutional state, everyone has the right to form an opinion, even if it is contrary to the court’s opinion. Therefore, Freedom of Speech cannot be restricted by criminal tools, or any other legal means.

The Court of Székesfehérvár has concluded, that the declaration did not form an opinion, but stated a fact, which was untrue, therefore the act of defamation was realized. The penalty is 2 years probation for all seven members of the board.

The verdict is not final, all defendants have appealed.

 

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