The prosecution of Dutch rapper Ismo (Ismael Houllich) has come to a halt. A court criminal court in Breda acquitted him because the judge felt that the rapper’s lyrics were “artistic expression” rather than hate speech, even though they “are of an offensive nature.”
Filmed in Breda, the video for Ismo’s first single, “Eenmans” (or “One Man’s”), shows Ismo singing: “I hate those f***ing Jews more than the Nazis” and “don’t shake hands with faggots”.
The prosecution had sought a fine of €1,000 euros and a further suspended fine of another €500. The prosecution also requested the removal of Ismo’s video clip from YouTube.
The Center for Information and Documentation on Israel and an umbrella group of gay organisations in the Netherlands issued a joint statement calling on the prosecution to appeal the “disquieting sentence, which appears to be a carte blanche for discriminative statements as long as they are made in a rap song.”