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Former Greek soccer player Vassilis Tsiartas was fined 5,000 euro ($5,008) and given a 10-month suspended prison sentence for criticizing the legalization of gender transition surgery in children.
Tsiartas was taken to court by the Transgender Support Association, which accused him of violating a law against “racism” that contains provisions against inciting violence or hatred based on gender ideology.
In 2017, responding to a law legalizing gender identity, the former soccer player posted on Facebook that he hoped “the first sex changes are carried out on the children of those who ratified this abomination.” He added, “Legitimize pedophiles too, to complete the crimes.”
Tsiartas is the first person to be convicted under the law against incitement to violence or hatred. The Transgender Support Association called the conviction “particularly important for the transgender community.” It added that it will continue fighting “all forms of intolerance, racism, and incitement to discrimination, hatred, and violence.”
The LGBT group also wants to “fully safeguard the human rights and freedoms of LGBTQ+ and especially transgender people in every sector of the public and private sphere.”
Tsiartas plans to appeal the ruling, according to the Greek Reporter.