The following article about the travesty of “justice” inflicted upon my Danish friend Steen was written by Peder Jensen, better known as Fjordman.
Earlier this month Steen was convicted in a Danish court and given a four-month prison sentence (suspended) for writing about and linking to a video of the murder of two young Scandinavian women by mujahideen in Morocco in 2018. He simply described what happened and linked to a site that had posted the murderers’ video of the atrocity, and that was enough to bring down the wrath of the Danish legal system upon himself.
Before I get to Fjordman’s account of what happened, I’d just like to say a few words about my association with Steen. I got to know him online in early 2007, and stayed with him at his flat in Copenhagen later that year when I attended the first of a series of Counterjihad conferences in Europe. He and I became good friends, and he is one of the finest people I know. (As it happens, that event in Copenhagen was the first time that Fjordman and Steen met, but that’s another story.)
Back then Steen, Fjordman, and I all wrote pseudonymously. Nowadays all three of us are public — how times have changed!
Steen took over the small blog Dansk-Svensk in 2004 and turned it into Snaphanen, retaining the combined focus on Danish and Swedish affairs. He was neither a blogger nor a writer by trade, but a professional photographer. Nevertheless, by patient work as an editor and collator, he made Snaphanen into the largest blog in Denmark.
In July of 2011, after the massacre committed by Anders Behring Breivik in Oslo and on the island of Utøya, like so many of us Steen was exposed to the glare of the media klieg lights by his site’s association with Fjordman. Under the same circumstances, numerous other Counterjihad activists fled and hid in the shadows in the face of all the vicious publicity, shutting down their sites and retiring from activism.
But not Steen. He remained defiant. He kept Snaphanen open and active, saying to those who would bring him down, in effect: “Here I am. Come and get me.”
Seven years later the Powers That Be at last managed to find a way to get him. The case against him is ludicrous. It’s buffoonery. The Danish government ought to be ashamed of itself.
Somebody should market lapel buttons featuring the slogan (in Danish, Norwegian, Swedish, and English): “We are all Steen now!”
Many thanks to LN for translating this Danish-language article from Snaphanen:
Convicted of exposing Islam?
February 24, 2022
Maren Ueland and Louisa Vesterager-Jespersen met a beastly death in the Atlas Mountains. Back home in Denmark and Norway the media and authorities did not want people to know about it.
For many years the Danish writer and photographer Steen Raaschou has run the website Snaphanen.dk. On September 20 2022 he was sentenced by the District Court of Copenhagen to four months’ imprisonment, suspended, for writing in December of 2018 about the murders of Louisa Vesterager-Jespersen and Maren Ueland in Morocco, and for linking to a video that showed the atrocities.
The trial has taken several years. Early on the morning of May 8 2019, Raaschou had his private residence searched by at least five police officers. They confiscated his computer equipment and handcuffed him as if he had been a dangerous terrorist. Raaschou was by then a pensioner and had no criminal record.
However, the authorities wanted a harsher punishment. The prosecutor had asked for six months of unconditional imprisonment for Raaschou. But the judges decided to impose a suspended sentence, partly because of the defendant’s age and health. Steen Raaschou has been seriously ill with cancer and is still taking numerous medications on a daily basis.
I know Mr. Raaschou personally, and was present in court myself, as one of dozens of witnesses. As a non-lawyer, I immediately found the application of the law to be strange.
Raaschou was convicted by the Copenhagen District Court of violating ¶264d of the Danish Criminal Code, which prohibits the dissemination of images relating to the “private affairs” of another person and which are clearly not in the public interest.
An example of this practice is if you were to distribute or publish nude pictures of your ex-girlfriend or spouse. Such actions are intended to personally harass and humiliate another person with images that are clearly private and certainly not in the public interest.
People die every day. Some die more brutally than others. Death by murder places an extra strain on the survivors, on the family and friends of the victims. This is because serious crime is not just a private matter. The right to privacy must be balanced against the public’s right to be informed about what is happening in the world around them. People should be made aware of problems and potential threats. They have a right to demand to receive basic information about the society in which they live. Moreover, withholding truthful information may often encourage the spread of rumours, which can be both true and false.
The double murder of Louisa Vesterager-Jespersen and Maren Ueland bore the stamp of an act of terrorism. The militant Muslims who committed the murders in an extremely brutal and ritualistic manner sympathised with terrorist organisations such as the Islamic State (IS).
A deadly terrorist attack against a Danish and a Norwegian citizen is of obvious and general interest to citizens of Denmark, Norway and other countries. It is quite unreasonable to treat this in the same way as the dissemination of private nude photographs.
Steen Raaschou referred to this fact on his website Snaphanen.dk in December of 2018 because he felt that the mainstream media were not reporting the whole truth about what had really happened in Morocco. The media in Denmark and Norway wrote diffusely that the two women had received “injuries to their necks”. This is such a gross paraphrase of what actually happened that it is in fact a complete lie. Raaschou himself says that he wrote to inform the public of the truth. In no way was this done to cause inconvenience to the victims’ families.
The judges at the Copenhagen District Court rejected the arguments by Raaschou and his lawyer that he had used his freedom of speech to inform the public. They considered that the victims’ interests outweighed the defendant’s freedom of expression.
It was also argued that Raaschou could have reported the double murder in a different way, rather than by showing a diffused screenshot and providing a video link to another website.
The video footage of the murders was not shown to the parties in court. However, a witness who has worked for the police was called. He described parts of the video. The judges prohibited reporting the content of the video.
Everyone present in the courtroom, including members of the audience such as myself, were thus prohibited from describing what we heard mentioned in the courtroom about the video. Violation of this prohibition could, in the worst case, lead to our own prosecution.