Four years in prison for terrorist attack on Enschede mosque
Five men were sentenced to four years in prison for arson with a terrorist intent at a mosque in Enschede in February. They threw molotov cocktails at the mosque while there were about 30 people inside, including children.
Part of the sentences are conditionally suspended, NOS reports. Four of the men were given four years, one of which conditionally suspended. The fifth man has two years of his prison sentence conditionally suspended because he showed remorse. The sentence is equal to what the Public Prosecutor demanded.
The court ruled that the men's action affected many people. "By carrying out their right-wing extremism and racist ideas in this way they brought a great deal of fear to especially the mosque goers in Enschede and the Dutch Muslim community in general." the court said.
The men's lawyer asked for a lower sentence, arguing that the incident was not an act of terrorism. He pointed to the clumsy way the arson was carried out - no one was injured and one of the people in the mosque managed to extinguish the fire before serious damage was done.
The court stated that the men's low intelligence did factor into the sentencing, but that does not diminish the terrorist nature of their actions.