Gerald Fredrick Töben

Gerald Fredrick Töben

Location: Adelaide-Norwood, Australia
34° 55' 16.0644" S, 138° 38' 11.796" E
Status: Under Arrest
Arrested between 26 Aug 2009 and 12 Nov 2009
Campaign Site:

From Wikipedia: Gerald Fredrick Töben is an Australian citizen and founder and director of the Adelaide Institute. He is the author of numerous works on education, political science and history, although he is best known for his historical revisionist works about the fate of the Jews in the Holocaust.

Töben has frequently been called a Holocaust denier, and has been accused of antisemitism, although he regularly denies these assertions. He was convicted of "offending the memory of the dead" in Germany in 1999, for his Holocaust-denial activity there, for which he served seven months in prison. In April 2009, Töben was found guilty of contempt of court for breaching a court order to refrain from publishing material which "vilifies Jewish people". He appealed against the sentence, but on 13 August 2009 The Full Court of the Federal Court of Australia rejected his appeal, and he started his 3 month jail sentence.

In 2008, the German federal authorities attempted unsuccessfully to extradite Töben from the United Kingdom under a European Arrest Warrant for allegedly publishing "antisemitic and / or revisionist" material on his website, which he writes from his home in Australia, and is a crime that does not exist in Britain. On October 1, 2008, Töben was detained at Heathrow Airport while flying from the United States to Dubai. In Westminster Magistrates' Court the next day, he objected to the terms of the warrant, claiming that he was protected by the terms of the Schengen agreement and said that his political and historical views had motivated the German authorities' decision to issue the warrant.

The arrest warrant was dismissed by Westminster Magistrates' Court on October 29, 2008, with the judge stating that the details it contained were "sparse". According to Ben Watson, Töben's lawyer, the court was unable to decide whether the warrant was valid because it did not specify whether any part of the crime took part in the United Kingdom and there was not sufficient information about the nature of Töben's alleged crime. The warrant spoke of "worldwide internet publications" but for it to be valid, it would have been necessary for the German authorities to have shown that the offence not only took place in Germany but that it did not take place in the United Kingdom. Töben was offered bail, pending an appeal by the German prosecuting authorities to the High Court. Strict conditions were set, including limitations on Töben's communication and travel but he was unable to raise the £100,000 security required.

The German authorities later withdrew their appeal, after the Crown Prosecution Service advised them that in the light of further information they had provided about the location of the alleged offence, it would not have been possible to satisfy the courts that the offence was extraditable. The German authorities later stated their intention to attempt to extradite Töben from other jurisdictions in the future.

The case caused some controversy in the United Kingdom, with the Liberal Democrats' home affairs spokesman Chris Huhne expressing concerns that the extradition would amount to an infringement on the freedom of speech.

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