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Appeals court increases sentence, rejects manslaughter charge in neo-Nazi assault case

Helsinki Appeals Court has increased neo-Nazi Jesse Torniainen’s sentence to two years and three months for an assault at a demonstration.

Helsingin Asema-aukion törkeästä pahoinpitelystä käräjäoikeudessa tuomittu Jesse Torniainen asian käsittelyssä Helsingin hovioikeudessa perjantaina 15. joulukuuta 2017.
Neo-Nazi leader Jesse Torniainen. Image: Martti Kainulainen / Lehtikuva

Neo-Nazi Jesse Torniainen’s sentence for a 2016 aggravated assault on a bystander at a demonstration has been increased by Helsinki Appeals Court.

The victim died a week later, but the far-right leader was acquitted of aggravated involuntary manslaughter after the judge ruled his death could not be clearly attributed to Torniainen’s attack.

Prosecutors had sought a six-year jail term in both the original case and the appeal.

Torniainen had run after, confronted and kicked in the chest a man who walked past his flag-waving neo-Nazi demonstrators outside Helsinki Railway station. The victim fell to the ground, struck his head on the pavement and lost consciousness, although he left hospital after treatment before falling ill again six days after the attack.

Torniainen's far-right group, the Finnish Resistance Movement, has been banned by a court in Tampere that ruled it was a violent and racist organisation.

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