16 Feb 2018

Christchurch Muslims to monitor radicalised teenager

12:29 pm on 16 February 2018

The Muslim community is applauding a judge's decision not to send a radicalised teenage boy to prison for a violent attack in Christchurch last July.

Police said he terrified a large number of people, but all details of the attack have been suppressed.

The teenager was sentenced in the Christchurch District Court yesterday to two years' intensive supervision.

Federation of Islamic Associations president Hazim Arafeh said that was the right thing to do.

"Sending him to prison would deprive him [of] the proper help that he needs.

"He will be receiving some proper Islamic counselling which we believe will help him overcome his radicalisation."

Mr Arafeh said the Muslim community in Christchurch will help monitor the boy, and exactly how he would be de-radicalised was still being worked out.

"This young man has been very misinformed about Islam and our role is to provide the proper information.

"He's been scammed."

Netsafe New Zealand's chief executive, Martin Cocker, said he had never heard of a case in New Zealand that involved a person that young becoming radicalised online.

"I was surprised I guess because we haven't seen a lot of that kind of thing here.

"It's a conversation that's being had all around the world and even our neighbours across the Tasman see online radicalisation as an issue. Here in new Zealand we just haven't seen much of it."

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