Appeals Court increases fine for Finns Party assault MP

Teuvo Hakkarainen debuted anti-immigrant slogans on his car this week as part of his election campaign, he'll now be paying a large fine for an assault conviction.

File photo: Teuvo Hakkarainen MP (Finns) / Credit: Official website

A Finns Party MP who assaulted and sexually harassed a female MP in parliament has had his punishment increased by the Helsinki Appeals Court.

Teuvo Hakkarainen, who hit the headlines again this week with anti-immigrant slogans on the side of his car, was initially sentenced to pay 45 day-fines for the attack on National Coalition Party MP Veera Ruoho, which happened after a Finns Party Christmas bash.

This has now been increased to 80 day-fines by the Appeals Court, which totals more than €5400 based on his salary earnings. A call from prosecutors for a conditional jail sentence was not upheld.

Hakkarainen says he has no memory of trying to forcibly kiss Ruoho, who was sitting in parliament’s cafe when she was accosted. Hakkarainen says he doesn’t remember putting her in a headlock either, but the court ruled than his fines should be increased because he had assaulted his victim in the head and neck area, included a sexual component to the attack, and because it happened in their workplace.

At the time of the assault and the later conviction, Hakkarainen faced virtually no sanctions from the Finns Party, and is running as a Finns Party candidate in the upcoming elections.