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    Rapper faces two years in jail for incitement to riot

    © Belga
    © Belga

    The Office of the Public Prosecutor requested a two-year jail sentence on Friday at the Brussels Criminal Court for rapper Benlabel, charged with calling for a riot via Facebook one day before riots broke out in the centre of the capital. The prosecution argued that the message the rapper posted on Facebook on the 10th of November was an evident threat and called for him to be sent to jail for two years for issuing written threats and using social media to cause damage.

    In his Facebook message, Benlabel had written: “Tomorrow, we’re going to burn everything in Lemonnier. Morocco City gang”, accompanying his post with a photo showing him with two automatic weapons. However, the rapper said on Friday that this was only a call for a celebration if Morocco qualified for the upcoming soccer World Cup.

    On the 11th of November fights broke out in the Brussels city centre, where many people had gathered following Morocco’s qualification. Some 300 persons were involved in the unrest, in which 23 people were injured, including 22 police officers, while vehicles were burnt and stores plundered.

    Christopher Vincent
    The Brussels Times