Some time ago, the European Foundation of Human Rights came across an outrageous group on social networking site Facebook called “Saw for the Poles”, which aimed to share all sorts of offensive content regarding Polish people. Their motto was “Shiv a pole while he’s young!” EFHR submitted a claim about the group and following that, the Regional Prosecution Office of Lithuania announced that they had started an official investigation into the matter, led by the Vilnius Constabulary. However, the latter declined to undertake the investigation, explaining that the idea of killing Poles was simply a joke. After an appeal to the Vilnius Regional Prosecution Office, the Constabulary’s decision to decline the case was overruled. However, the long lasting investigation only succeeded partially. The fact that the group has been deleted and some of its members interviewed by police can be perceived as a partial success, but not a total success.
After a long wait, the Foundation submitted a written request for information on the status of the case and following that, we have been told that on the 8th October 2012 the investigation was closed as it was found that no offences contrary to s. 170(2) of the Criminal Code, were committed (public taunting, promotion of discrimination, contempt and promotion of hatred).
Nevertheless, the Foundation has put forward a claim about the cancellation of the investigation on the grounds of subjective decision-making by the Inspection of Journalism Ethics according to which there was no promotion of hatred. The response yet again is adverse as according to the prosecution, the claimant in this case cannot bring action in respect to the dropping of the investigation. It was stated that the investigation can only be resumed on request of the aggrieved party. The Foundation will, of course, also bring action in respect of that decision. However in order to make sure that justice is served upon the people behind this Facebook group, we ask anyone who would agree to take part in the investigation as witnesses or aggrieved persons to contact us directly. It would give us hope of bringing justice and punishment upon the makers of this aforementioned nationalist group.
We at the European Foundation of Human Rights therefore kindly request any persons who witnessed the activity of the aforementioned group to contact us. Any information given to us by people who have seen the page and/or feel aggrieved, may be helpful to resume the investigation and result in just punishment for the perpetrators.
Translated by Kamil Szwarc within the framework of a traineeship programme of the European Foundation of Human Rights, www.efhr.eu.