No trial for Austrian ex-mayor who said Jews deserve hanging

(JTA) — An Austrian ex-mayor who said journalists and Jews should be hanged will not stand trial for hate speech, prosecutors said.

A spokesperson for the public prosecutor’s office of Krems an der Donau, a municipality located 35 miles east of Vienna, said that Karl Simlinger, a former mayor of the village of Gfohl, will not be tried because he made the statement to a crowd that was too small to justify indicting him for incitement to hate, the news site Heute.at reported on Monday.

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Simlinger resigned as mayor in December after the media reported on statements he made during a town hall meeting.

“I don’t give a shit about asylum seekers, but the journalists are at fault. They should be hanged; they are like the Jews,” he was quoted as saying.

Simlinger at first denied making the comment before releasing a statement in which he confirmed making it. “It wholly runs contrary to my worldview,” he wrote in the statement, in which he said he would resign. “It was not my intention to cause offense, and I apologize unreservedly.”

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