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Court rules 'kiss my ass' insulting

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Court rules 'kiss my ass' insulting
Pucker up! Photo: DPA
14:57 CEST+02:00
The German phrase “Leck mich am Arsch,” the equivalent of “kiss my ass,” has been officially ruled an insult by a court in Kaiserslautern.

The district court revised an earlier ruling in a case involving a man who uttered the phrase to a policeman at a train station in the western state of Rhineland-Palatinate.

The man responded with the rude remark after the officer asked him not to smoke.

A lower court had originally acquitted the man of insulting the policeman, arguing the phrase was a common colloquial form of speech in the state. But the chamber overturned the ruling and imposed a fine after an appeal by state prosecutors.

German law criminalizes speech considered insulting or hateful. Insulting others with expletives – especially government officials – is a prosecutable offence that can result in fines or even jail time.

The law has occasionally become a source of public debate such as in the case of a North Rhine-Westphalia politician who called the controversial Thilo Sarrazin an “ass,” and was ordered to either pay a fine or go to prison.

The Local/DAPD/mdm

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