Jan. 23, 2023
MONTREAL — B’nai Brith Canada is heartened that a Montreal resident was found guilty Monday of promoting hatred toward Jews in posts on the Daily Stormer, a neo-Nazi rag.
A Quebec Court Judge ruled at the Montreal courthouse that Gabriel Sohier Chaput’s writings did not constitute satire or exaggeration, as he argued in his defence.
The decision comes after B’nai Brith brought the matter to legal authorities in 2018 after the Montreal Gazette published a series of articles exposing his hate posts.
“We are encouraged that the courts are recognizing that hate crimes are serious offences,” said Sam Goldstein, B’nai Brith’s Director of Legal Affairs. “B’nai Brith brought Chaput to the Crown’s attention and we will continue following this case to the sentencing stage.”
Sohier Chaput had never been detained since the warrant was issued for his arrest in 2018 but Judge Manlio Del Negro ordered that he be taken into custody Monday.
The judge wrote in his decision that Sohier Chaput “intentionally promoted hatred, through the Daily Stormer platform, against people of Jewish faith.”
Judge Del Negro said the court did not accept Sohier Chaput’s “hodgepodge of explanations” about his antisemitic posts.
“(The court) rejects his entire account, because his explanations leave no doubt,” Judge Del Negro wrote. “The court finds that the explanations provided are specious, insincere, opportunistic, deceptive, far-fetched, implausible, concealers of the truth and were cobbled together to conceal the true intention of the accused.”
He added: “The victims of the Holocaust and also the victims of other genocides perpetrated throughout history, as well as their families, deserve to be left in peace. The suffering they have been put through is inexpressible and defies the meaning of humanity.”
Among his many hate rants, Sohier Chaput posted: “We need to make sure no (social justice warrior) or Jew can remain safely untriggered. Non-stop Nazism, everywhere, until the very streets are flooded with the tears of our enemies.”
Michael Mostyn, Chief Executive Officer of B’nai Brith Canada, expressed satisfaction with Judge Del Negro’s decision and hopes it will serve as a deterrent against those who seek to spread hate.
“Sohier Chaput is a coward who behind the veil of the internet thought he could rile up other haters to his disgusting cause,” said Mostyn. “Today’s decision shows that Canadians and our legal system will not accept such harmful, dangerous and genocidal drivel, all of which aim to resurrect the most vile ideology in world history.”
Sohier Chaput faces a maximum sentence of two years.