No jail time for Iraqi asylum seeker who cut off ISIS fighter’s head

The judge said that the actions of ISIS against the local population were no excuse for the degrading way the defendant had treated their bodies.

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File photo of judge holding documents / Credit: iStock

An Iraqi asylum seeker who was filmed cutting off the head of a dead ISIS fighter, and posing in front of burning bodies, will not spend any time in prison for his crimes.

Today, Helsinki District Court sentenced the 41-year old former Iraqi army soldier to an 18 month suspended sentence.

Footage of the man’s actions with the dead ISIS fighters were shared on Facebook. One video showed the soldier decapitating the fighter, and holding up his head. Another video showed him posing in front of the burning bodies of ISIS fighters who had been killed in an airstrike.

In court, the defendant admitted the actions, but argued that ISIS terrorists had carried out much more brutal crimes. His lawyers said it was not a crime to pose in front of burning bodies since they could not be identified, and the defendant said he played no part in setting the bodies on fire.

The judge didn’t accept all of those arguments, and said the actions of ISIS against the local population were not any justification for the inhumane and degrading treatment the ex-soldier had inflicted on the bodies.