The Danish Supreme Court has returned its verdict in the appeal case of six members of the Fighters+Lovers group who were charged with providing financial support to two armed terrorist organisations – the Palestinian Front for the Liberation of Palestine (PFLP) and the Fuerzas Armadas Revolucionarias de Colombia (FARC).
Six members of the group were handed down suspended sentences. Two of the group had their High Court sentences of six months in prison reduced to suspended sentences.
At the centre of the case was the sale by the organisation of T-shirts with PFLP and FARC logos at DKK 170 each, DKK 37 of which was sent on to the two movements.
In 2007, the lower court acquitted Fighters+Lovers members. Although the lower court found that the PFLP and FARC did carry out actions that could come under terrorism legislation, it could not be proved that they were attempting to overthrow a government.
That decision was appealed to the High Court which sentenced two of the Fighters+Lovers group to six months in prison, while the rest of the group was either found not guilty or given suspended sentences of 2 to 4 months.
The group was given leave to appeal to the Supreme Court, which returned its verdict today.
As the group awaited its final verdict in the Danish legal system, some doubts were raised as to whether there is a difference between an organisation fighting an undemocratic regime or a power of occupation.
In an answer to the left-wing Unity List Party, Justice Minister Brian Mikkelsen said that: “terrorism is defined in relation to a legitimate state which builds on the principles of democracy and the Rule of Law. Part of the evaluation is also whether an act is targeted at, among others, an occupation power.”
The prosecution in the case has argued that the defining factor is whether civilians are killed, irrespective of whether a national government is democratic.
Defence rejects claims
While the prosecution has maintained that the PFLP and FARC are terrorist organisations, defence attorneys said that human rights organisations do not see the two as such.
The defence has also claimed that civilian deaths attributed to the organisations are not part of a conscious strategy.
The PFLP and FARC are listed as terrorist organisations by the EU, Canada and the United States.
Edited by Julian Isherwood