Budapest, April 13 (MTI) – The prosecutor’s office has initiated expedited legal proceedings in connection with two activists who threw paint cans at the presidential Sándor Palace during a demonstration on Monday night.
The court handed down its verdict in expedited proceedings, finding the defendants guilty of rowdy behaviour and damaging the Sándor Palace at this past Monday’s demonstration.
Márton Gulyás, who had procured the paint cans, was sentenced to 300 hours of community work. The court annulled a probation sentence he had been given earlier by another court, also for rowdy behaviour.
Gergő Varga, the co-defendant, was sentenced to 200 hours of community work.
The prosecution had requested suspended prison sentences for the defendants. The defendants’ attorneys had asked the court to dismiss the charges, arguing that their offences did not qualify as crimes.
“The squirting paint smeared the registered monument as well as the bodies and clothing of police,” Tibor Ibolya, Budapest’s prosecutor, said in a statement earlier in the day. Two cans hit the wall and caused damage worth 23,000 forints (EUR 74) to the building, the statement added.
On Monday, participants in the spontaneous demonstration protested against President Janos Áder’s signing a contested higher education amendment seen by opponents as aimed against Budapest’s Central European University.