The SA Jewish Board of Deputies has welcomed a court ruling which found a man guilty of crimen injuria after he posted a flurry of anti-Jew messages on popular social media site Twitter.
In June last year, Matome Letsoalo posted: “@SAJBD The #Holocaust Will be like a Picnic When we are done with all you Zionist Bastards. F**k All of You.”
The tweet showed photographs of Holocaust victims.
He then tweeted: “SAJBD Must get Decimated. We Can’t have Scandinavian Rats, Fake Jews, Zionist Bastards Running our Economy.”
According to the SAJBD, when Letsoalo was challenged by others, he posted threatening and abusive messages which led the board to open a case of crimen injuria.
However, last week Friday, the Randburg Magistrate’s Court found Letsoalo guilty of the crime.
SAJBD national director Wendy Kahn described the court’s ruling as a vindication of over two years of effort by the SAJBD and its legal advisers to call Letsoalo to account for his actions.
She said “This outcome sends a strong message that threatening and hate-filled attacks on our community will not be tolerated and that the SAJBD will do everything necessary to bring those responsible to justice, no matter how long it takes”.
Ian Levitt, whose firm Ian Levitt Attorneys represented the SAJBD in the case, said the matter had been going on for over two years but despite several delays, mostly brought on by Covid-19, they were not swayed in their determination to have Letsoalo convicted.
He said “We will continue to assist in the prosecution of those that attack our community, seemingly with impunity, and we hope that this conviction will be a lesson to those who do so”.
Letsoalo will appear in court again this Friday for mitigation and sentencing.