- A New Zealand man who owned a Nazi-themed insulation company pleaded guilty on Friday to sharing footage of the Christchurch mosque attack last month.
- Philip Nevill Arps, 44, shared the raw footage to roughly 30 people and requested it be altered to feature crosshairs and a “kill count.”
- Arps was also behind a 2016 incident in which he helped deliver a box of pigs’ heads to the same mosque that would later be targeted in the shooting.
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A New Zealand man who owned a Nazi-themed insulation company pleaded guilty on Friday to sharing the live-streamed video of the Christchurch mosque shooting last month.
Philip Neville Arps, 44, was charged with two counts: one for sharing raw footage of the attack to roughly 30 people on Facebook, and another for requesting someone alter the footage to feature crosshairs and a “kill count” so he could distribute it as a meme, The New Zealand Herald reported.
Police reportedly said Arps called the modified footage “awesome.”
Arps drew immediate backlash in the wake of the Christchurch massacre, when a gunman stormed two mosques and killed 50 people. In addition to sharing the footage of the attack, Arps has previously been involved in racist incidents.
He was part of a group of men who delivered boxes of pigs’ heads to the Al Noor mosque in 2016 – the same mosque at the center of the Christchurch shooting three years later.
Arps was even featured in a video discussing the pigs’ head incident and his subsequent conviction for “offensive behaviour,” according to The New Zealand Herald. He said he was fined $US800 for the crime.
“It was a deliberate attack, and deliberate offence against Muslims, were the judge’s words. Obviously the judge knows me well,” Arps said. “White power, my friends, my family, my people. Let’s get these f—–s out. Bring on the cull.”
White supremacist tropes also feature prominently in the insulation company Arps owned. The company, Beneficial Insulation, featured Nazi iconography known as a “black sun” in its logo.
The symbol has ancient Norse and Celtic roots, but has since been appropriated by Nazis, according to the Anti-Defamation League. The logo can be seen in an archived version of Beneficial Insulation’s website.
The URL of the now-defunct website, www.biig.co.nz, may also have been a Nazi reference, according to stuff.co.nz. BIIg, an abbreviation for Beneficial Insulation Installs Guaranteed, was also shorthand for Bauabschnitt IIg, the name of an area at the Auschwitz concentration camp that was used to store property taken from Jewish victims.
Arps is due for sentencing on June 14 and faces a maximum penalty of 14 years, according to the Associated Press.
- Read more:
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- The Christchurch shooting suspect appeared in court via a video link, seeing victims for the first time since the attack. Some were still in wheelchairs and hospital gowns.
- New Zealand shooting survivor says he forgives the gunman, at emotional gathering where 20,000 people heard the names of the victims read aloud
- A New Zealand gun owner who went viral for turning in his semiautomatic rifle before the new ban was even announced explains why he did it
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