Fouad Belkacem, former head of the Sharia4Belgium terror group, will appeal in cassation against a decision to strip him of his Belgian nationality, his attorney, Liliane Verjauw, told Belga news agency, confirming a report on VTM Nieuws. Two weeks ago, the Antwerp Appeal Court had ordered him stripped of his nationality for severe violations of his duties as a citizen. His lawyer declined to say which elements of that order Belkacem would contest. “We have a month to build a case,” she said.
Verjauw made no secret of the fact that she plans to exhaust all legal channels in Belgium so that she can then take the matter to the European Court of Human Rights.
Belkacem has been behind bars for five years now. The Appeal Court found his criminal record “impressive”: 27 police court convictions and 9 criminal convictions (6 by criminal courts and 3 on appeal) for crimes such as theft, threats, damage to property, grievous bodily harm, defamation, libel, racism and harassment.
The heaviest penalty inflicted on him was in January 2016, when he was sentenced to 12 years imprisonment as the leader of the terrorist group Sharia4Belgium. That term ends on 25 May 2027.