An Amsterdam shopkeeper who sold several antique copies of Adolf Hitler’s Mein Kampf has been let off by judges in Amsterdam without a conviction.
The public prosecution department said Michiel van Eyck should be fined €1,000 for selling the book. Although owning the book is legal in the Netherlands, it is not legal to sell it.
The court said the book does still contain comments insulting to Jews and inciting hatred, discrimination and anti-Jewish violence. It should therefore remain illegal to sell copies.
Van Eyck, represented by lawyer Gerard Spong, says the ban has been overtaken by events and anyone can download a copy or buy one via internet. In addition, he only sold the book to collectors and historians, website nu.nl reports.
Partly based on this development, the court said a conviction would be going too far and is not necessary in order to protect Jews against discrimination and hatred.
The Totalitarian Art Gallery had three copies of the book for sale and Van Eyck told the NRC last year the book was not displayed in the window, but is an historic item which fits in with the collection.
The shop also sells other memorabilia from the Nazi era as well as relics of Stalin’s rule in Russia and China under Mao.
Seven years ago, the Dutch parliament voted to retain the ban on selling Mein Kampf by a narrow majority.
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