We refer to your report below and wish to congratulate the Perth jury found Brendan Lee O'Connell, guilty last week of six charges of racial vilification.
We should not tolerate such action in public, in the 21st century.
Unity Party WA
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Racist post rant on jailed man's blog
BELLE TAYLOR, The West Australian February 1, 2011, 6:05 am
A Perth man was jailed for three years yesterday over a racist tirade - but hours after he was sentenced, supporters posted a vicious anti-Semitic rant on his blog website.
Brendan Lee O'Connell, 40, was found guilty by a Perth jury last week of six charges of racial vilification.
They stemmed from an incident outside a South Perth supermarket in 2009, when he recorded himself chasing Jewish man Stanley Keyser down the street while yelling Judaism was a "religion of racism, hate, homicide and ethnic cleansing".
The trial was centred around the video O'Connell made of himself arguing with Mr Keyser at a Friends of Palestine protest against the sale of Israeli oranges at the supermarket.
He filmed himself at the Perth Bell Tower calling Judaism a "death cult" before posting the video online.
He was also charged over material published on his blog which defamed Judaism.
District Court Judge John Wisbey said O'Connell was an "intelligent man with an irrational hatred of Jewish people".
He said the only appropriate form of punishment would be an immediate term of imprisonment.
He said a severe punishment was necessary to send a message to people who might share O'Connell's views, including the group of supporters who followed the trial closely, often interrupting the court.
Despite the judge's warning, his supporters posted a reaction to the sentence on O'Connell's personal blog, insulting Judge Wisbey and the Jewish community and calling for retribution against O'Connell's detractors.
O'Connell's victim said outside court he had received hate mail as a result of the case but mainly from overseas.
Mr Keyser said that despite the continued harassment and the recent blog posts, he felt racial vilification laws were effective.
Although he would have liked to see O'Connell get a longer sentence, he believed justice had been served.
O'Connell's defence centred on his argument Judaism was not a race but a religion.
On the first day of the trial, instead of using his opening address to outline his defence, O'Connell made a speech declaring the court unlawful.
O'Connell's term was backdated to begin on January 24 and he will be eligible for parole.
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