Seinäjoki police wrapping up their suspected hate crime investigation. Charges are expected this month.

by , under Migrant Tales

The Seinäjoki police, which had taken over a year and eight months to investigate a crime when Fares Al-Obaidi was attacked by over ten people from the Western Finnish town of Teuva, plans to bring charges this month, according to the victim. The incident happened on June 6, 2020 when over ten suspected townspeople from the Western Finnish town of Teuva physically attacked Al-Obaidi. His car was later vandalized.

Al-Obaidi was questioned by the police earlier last month, and one of the surprising matters that turned up was that the suspects, who attacked the young Iraqi, allege that they were provoked and attacked.

“I denied this to the police,” he explained. “I made it clear [to the investigating police officer, Aki Perämäki] that it was the townspeople of Teuva who started the incident [and attacked me].”

Al-Obaidi added that the police are accusing him of petty assault.

“My lawyer said at the questioning that even if they find you guilty of petty assault, it is not serious and you did so because you were defending yourself from the attackers,” he said.

One of the matters to watch closely, in this case, is if the Seinäjoki police will charge the suspects with a hate crime. The police said previously that what happened could well be a hate crime.

The young victim said that he hoped that the police would charge those who are guilty.

“I am not guilty of anything, and it felt that the police didn’t have any understanding for what I went through,” he concluded.

Al-Obaidi admitted that his life was not the same after the June 2020 incident. He said he has problems concentrating and takes 3-4 medications to relieve stress, trauma and help him sleep.