Man charged with hate crime for attempting to attack Croatia Gay Parade
A 25-year-old man was arrested and charged with hate crime for alledegly attempting to throw Molotov cocktails at the Gay Parade in Zagreb last weekend, police said Thursday.
The man, identified only as Josip. S., is accused of preparing Molotov cocktails at home - bottles containing gasoline - and planning to throw them at the participants of the Gay Parade - entitled here "Gay Pride’’ - at the Zagreb’s main square last Sunday.
Police troops - among 500 that provided security for about 300 participants of the parade - spotted the man and he fled the scene. Two of his aides, who were armed with eggs and tomatoes, were arrested on the spot, while the man was tracked down later.
He will remain in detention under suspicion of attempting to endanger lives and property by an act out of hatred toward the participants of the gay parade, police said in a statement. He has not been formally indicted yet.
Several people were lightly injured across the town during the parade, the seventh in a row in Zagreb, as homosexuality remains a taboo subject for some in this predominantly Roman Catholic country.
The man is the first person to face charge of a hate crime since it was installed in the Penal Code last year.