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Polish pop star vindicated over blasphemy case

todaySeptember 15, 2022 1

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DodaImage source, Getty Images

Europe’s top human rights court has ruled that a Polish pop star who was convicted of blasphemy 10 years ago had her rights violated.

Dorota Rabczewska, known professionally as Doda, was fined by a Warsaw court for saying the writers of the Bible had been intoxicated on wine and cannabis.

But the European Court of Human Rights in Strasbourg said her statements were protected by her right to free speech.

It ordered the Polish authorities to pay her €10,000 (£8,680) in damages.

The damages amount to more than nine times the fine she was ordered to pay by the Warsaw court.

The original charges stemmed from a TV interview with the 38-year-old singer that was broadcast in 2009.

During the transmission, she said that although she believed in a “higher power”, she was more convinced by dinosaurs than by the Bible.

She added: “It is hard to believe in something written by people who drank too much wine and smoked weed.”

She was charged the following year and found guilty in 2012 by the Warsaw District Court, which imposed a fine of 5,000 zloty (£915; €1,060).

The court in Strasbourg ruled that although her statements could shock believers, it had not been established they would stir up violence or hatred and were therefore protected by her right to free speech.

As well as being one of Poland’s most successful pop singers, Doda is also known as a songwriter, actress, music producer and television personality.

She rose to fame as lead singer with the rock band Virgin before going solo.

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