GENEVA (Sep. 17)
The leader of a group known as the Universal Church has been found guilty of publishing an anti-Semitic brochure that claimed that Jewish greed was responsible for causing World War II.
Reimers Peters was fined $4,000 last week by a Swiss court and ordered to pay $6,800 in legal costs after being found guilty of breaching a law that makes it a crime to discriminate against ethnic groups or incite racial hatred.
The law, passed by Swiss legislators in 1993, was approved the next year in a national referendum.
The law has enabled the courts to handle a series of complaints of alleged anti-Semitism, including one against a library in Basel charged with distributing a book already banned in Germany that minimized the extent of Nazi war crimes and that espoused the theory of a Jewish conspiracy to dominate the world.
Another complaint filed against four record dealers charges them with distributing a neo-Nazi propaganda record that was also previously banned in Germany.
Prior to the Swiss law’s enactment, neo-Nazis in France and Germany had avoided those countries’ anti-racist laws by traveling to Switzerland to promote their views.