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Finnish chain fined for its newsletter’s anti-Semitic conspiracy theories

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(JTA) — A Finnish supermarket chain that publishes and distributes a free newsletter was fined $62,000 for offering anti-Semitic hate speech to shoppers.

The Ylivieska-Raahe district court imposed the fine Monday for articles that  appeared in recent months in Magneettimedia, which is published and distributed by the Juha Karkkainen supermarket chain, the news site Kaleva.fi reported.

Articles that have appeared in the newsletter over the past few years include “Zionist Terrorism in Norway”;  “CNN, Goldman Sachs and Zionist Control”; and “How to Break Down and Dominate the Zionists.”

Juha Karkkainen, who owns the chain, said Wednesday that he would appeal the verdict, according to a report by the Etela-Suomen Sanomat daily.

Karkkainen claimed in court that his publication was an alternative media outlet publishing information that mainstream media organizations would not, the Finnish broadcaster YLE reported.

The court rejected the argument, finding that the articles constituted hate speech, but did not grant the prosecutor’s request for a suspended jail term.

Magneettimedia has a readership of 360,000, according to the Iltalehti daily.

The trial against Karkkainen began following two complaints filed in February against the chain store — by the Central Council of Jewish Communities in Finland and by an identified individual.

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