Vilnius Regional Prosecutor‘s Office terminates one more hate speech investigation and closes the file

On the 27th of August, 2015 the national LGBT* rights organization LGL received a decision by the Vilnius Regional Prosecutor‘s Office terminating a pre-trial investigation on hateful online comments inciting discrimination against homosexual persons. LGL applied to the Vilnius Regional Prosecutor‘s Office on the grounds of the article 170(2) of the Criminal Code of the Republic of Lithuania earlier this year.

A special witness A. R. posted the following public hate speech comment under an article in one Lithuanian website: “The best cure for every faggot is a baseball bat to the * and they will no longer want to bang in the asshole”. During the investigation the Office of the Inspector of Journalist Ethics provided with a conclusion, stating that the comment is non-discriminatory, however publicly insulting persons on the grounds of sexual orientation.

Meanwhile, A. R. stated that he “does not tolerate abnormal, unacceptable and immoral gay relationships”. Furthermore, the special witness did not admit nor denied that he posted the aforementioned online comment. This is only the latest instance of similar decisions when a pre-trial investigation on hate speech is being terminated without further investigative steps.

The national LGBT* rights organization LGL actively reacts in the cases of the hate speech against representatives of the LGBT* community. LGL’s primary intention is to contribute to the formation of law practice whereby the motive of a hate crime is considered in investigating similar cases and prosecuting the guilty parties. The association LGL will appeal the Vilnius Regional Prosecutor‘s Office decision to the superior prosecutor.