Owner of 'Nazi-themed' Firm Admits Sharing Christchurch Attack Video

Philip Arps, whose company uses a logo commonly used by Nazis and features other Nazi-related themes, distributed the video showing the massacre that left 50 dead despite New Zealand's chief censor's ruling that made it a criminal offense

People look at the flowers and tributes displayed in memory of the twin mosque massacre victims at the Botanical Garden in Christchurch, March 29, 2019.
AFP

The Christchurch owner of a "Nazi-themed" insulation company on Friday pleaded guilty to sharing and distributing the video of the terrorist attack on two mosques in the same city.

Philip Arps admitted distributing the video that was filmed with a helmet-mounted camera and live-streamed on Facebook of the massacre which left 50 people dead, local media Stuff reported.

The day after the March 15 attack Arps sent the video to an unknown person and asked for it to be modified with a "kill count" as people were shot, and with cross-hairs as though the viewer was looking through a rifle scope, the website reported.

Philip Arps stands in the dock at the District Court in Christchurch, New Zealand, March 20, 2019.
Mark Mitchell/AP

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New Zealand's chief censor made it a criminal offense to possess or distribute the video, deeming it "objectionable." 

Under its new classification, people found to be distributing the video could face up to 14 years in prison, or a 10,000-NZ-dollar (6,645-US-dollar) fine.

The 44-year-old is the owner of a company called Beneficial Insulation that uses a sunwheel, or black sun, as its logo, which is commonly used by Nazis. The company states that it charges 14.88 NZ dollars per meter for insulation, a reference to a white supremacist slogan and to Adolf Hitler.

The company's full name is Beneficial Insulation Installs Guaranteed, shortened to BIIg, which is also the name of a barracks at the Auschwitz concentration camp.

Arps is one of 10 people charged for objectionable publication offences in relation to the video of the Christchurch terror attack.

Arps has been remanded in custody and will be sentenced on June 14.

Suspected white supremacist Brenton Tarrant has been charged with murder in 50 cases