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Mila trial: Six people convicted of harassing French teenager over anti-Islam videos

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By AFP  with Euronews
Mila, pictured leaving the courtroom in Paris in June 2021.
Mila, pictured leaving the courtroom in Paris in June 2021.   -   Copyright  AP Photo/Thibault Camus, File

Six people have been sentenced for harassing a French teenager online after she criticised Islam in social media videos.

The Paris court had found the suspects guilty of sending hate messages and death threats to a 16-year-old girl -- identified as Mila.

They were given punishments ranging from a three-month suspended sentence to a four-month prison term under an electronic bracelet.

Judges heard how Mila was the target of a "tidal wave of hatred" after she posted a video online in January 2020.

The teenager had responded to online insults about her sexual orientation with a passionate video in which she made offensive remarks about Islam. She was also threatened after posting a second video in November 2020.

According to her lawyer, Mila has received more than 100,000 hate messages and death threats since her first video and now lives under police protection.

One female suspect was found guilty of sending death threats while the five other defendants were convicted of aggravated harassment. They will also have to pay Mila €3,000 each in compensation for moral damage.

The case has sparked debate in France over free speech and religious rights.

In July 2021, a French court also convicted 11 other people for online harassment related to Mila's videos.