New Zealand man jailed for sharing video of Christchurch mosque attacks

Clay Curtis
June 18, 2019

"Quite frankly, there's no comparison", said Judge Stephen O'Driscoll as he imposed the sentence on the 44-year-old for two charges of distributing the objectionable live-streamed video of the mosque murders.

According to RNZ, Arps sent footage of the attack to around 30 people, even asking an unknown individual to add cross-hairs and a body count to "make it more fun".

Fifty-one people died in the attack on two Christchurch mosques on March 15.

An examination report conducted by police forensics experts, seen by the Herald, reveal Arps' fascination with white supremacy ideology.

Philip Neville Arps, (left) appears for sentencing in the Christchurch District Court.

Arps' lawyer Anselm Williams argued his client should not be sent to prison. This week, he pleaded not guilty to all charges and will face trial in May next year. The judge said Arps had strong and unrepentant views about the Muslim community and committed a hate crime.

The judge said he would not mention some of the matters Arps stated his pre-sentence interview because he would regard them as a "badge of honour" if they were mentioned publicly.

The Crown prosecutor Shivani Dayal said because of Arps' extreme ideological outlook, there was no prospect of his rehabilitation and his sentence should rule out home detention.

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The judge also said Arps had asked someone to insert a kill count and crosshairs on the video to create a meme, however no evidence existed that he ever shared the edited clip.

He said it was "particularly cruel" to share the video in the days after the attacks when relatives were still waiting to hear news of their loved ones.

"It's my submission that this court needs to be very careful to sentence Mr Arps based on what it is that he has actually done, and what he accepts he has done, not on the basis of the views that he holds", Mr Williams said.

"You have a view that the mainsteam media is corrupt and owned by Zionist media groups", the judge said.

The judge noted that Arps had compared himself to Adolf Hitler's deputy Rudolf Hess, and that his political beliefs meant there was a high chance of him re-offending.

He owns an insulation company called Beneficial Insulation - which features a Nazi symbol as its logo and uses other white supremacist symbols in its marketing.

In 2016, Arps was convicted of offensive behaviour and fined $800 after he delivered a box of pigs heads to the Al Noor mosque, where 42 people were allegedly shot by Tarrant three years later.

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