Austrian court sentences neo-Nazi brothers to lengthy jail terms

A lawyer representing some of the individuals listed on “Judas Watch” told the court that by marking Jews with a “Judenstern,” the site had engaged in “incitement to murder.”

By The Algemeiner

A court in Vienna has jailed two Austrian neo-Nazi brothers over a vehemently antisemitic website that was described by one prosecuting lawyer as “incitement to murder.”

One brother, named in the local press as “Benjamin H.”, was sentenced to a four-year jail term last Tuesday by the Vienna Regional Criminal Court under Austrian laws prohibiting the revival of national socialism.

His website, titled “Judas Watch,” listed the names of 1,787 individuals and organizations, with Jewish individuals marked with a “Judenstern” — the “Jews’ Star” which the Nazi regime forced Jews to wear upon their outer clothing.

The court heard that Benjamin H.’s identity could not be detected because his website was hosted on a server in the U.S. However, investigators unmasked him through his brother Philip, a white supremacist rapper who uses the moniker “Mr. Bond” and is popular in neo-Nazi circles.

One of Mr. Bond’s tracks was played on the live stream of the Oct. 9, 2019 attack on the synagogue in the German city of Halle during Yom Kippur services by Stephan Balliet, a neo-Nazi gunman who was sentenced to a life term in jail in Dec. 2020. Another track plagiarized the Akon and Snoop Dogg hit “I wanna love you” by changing the lyrics to “I wanna gas you.”

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Prosecutors said that Philip H., who was on trial alongside his brother, wrote lyrics that “teem with Nazi glorification and fantasies of violence against blacks, homosexuals and Jews.”

He also translated into German the manifesto of the neo-Nazi gunman who murdered 49 Muslim worshipers and wounded dozens more in attacks on two mosques in Christchurch, New Zealand, in March 2019. As a result of these offenses, the court sentenced Philip H. to 10 years in prison.

Austrian police investigators discovered messages between the two brothers during a Jan. 21 search of Philip’s house that proved Benjamin was the editor of “Judas Watch,” a site that remained online for nearly four years between 2016 and 2020.

Johannes Kerbl — a lawyer representing some of the individuals listed on “Judas Watch” — told the court that by marking Jews with a “Judenstern,” the site had engaged in “incitement to murder.”

The court also heard that many of those tagged on “Judas Watch” had been unhappy with the police investigation. One writer listed, Julya Rabinowich, told the German news outlet Zeit that the police had not warned her that her name had been included, despite the threat of violence. “One idiot put the list together, another idiot could take it seriously,” she said.

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Another individual who was listed — Charlotte Knobloch, a Holocaust survivor and former head of the German Jewish community — said she had been relieved by the sentencing of the two brothers. Congratulating the police for their investigation, Knobloch added pointedly that “such successes are all too rare.”