Infamous French comedian Dieudonné M’Bala M’Bala, who has previously been fined and sentenced to prison in France and Belgium for antisemitic comments and making the "reverse Nazi salute,” was sentenced on appeal in Geneva for antisemitic statements made while performing in Switzerland in 2019.
Dieudonné, whose previous convictions in France were for racial insults and incitement to hatred, was originally convicted in a Swiss court in July 2021 for “racial discrimination, defamation and insult.”
The appeal of the conviction was rejected by the Geneva Criminal Appeal and Review Chamber who sentenced the comedian to 180 day’s worth of fines at 170 Swiss francs per day, which totals around $29,349 USD, Le Figaro reported.
He had been on trial for offensive comments one of his characters made about gas chambers in a show he performed between January 4 and 6 2019 in Nyon, Switzerland and again on June 28 and 29 in Geneva.
During the trial, Dieudonné alleged that he had not made the remarks but that they were said by his “character.” The president of the Geneva police court and the appeals court both refuged his argument and he was convicted.
Dieudonné displayed “contempt for the victims of the Shoah and his desire to create a controversy” also he also damaged “human dignity and public peace,” the court stated, the Tribune de Genève reported.
Judge Vincent Fournier said: “It cannot be held that he was parodying a Holocaust denier, in the manner of Charlie Chaplin parodying Hitler.”