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Man jailed for IS propaganda loses appeal

NZ NewswireNZ Newswire 26/09/2016

An Auckland man jailed for distributing Islamic State propaganda videos has lost an appeal to cut his sentence short.

Mt Roskill man Imran Patel, 26, shouted: "Tell John Key to stop being a slave to America and get out of Iraq," as he was dragged out of the room by guards after being handed a sentence of three years and nine months' at the Auckland District Court in June.

The sentence made him the first person in New Zealand to be handed a punishment for possessing footage of extreme violence.

On Monday, the High Court turned down his request to have his jail time cut.

His lawyers argued the punishment was too harsh, given the level of culpability Patel had in the crime and the judge had made a mistake by comparing the case to child pornography.

But Justice Graham Lang said the offending implied Patel was trying get other people to join him in showing support for the terrorist group.

He also found while the original sentence may have had a high starting point, Patels' previous convictions for threatening to kill and assault with a weapon in 2014 and 2015 called for a harsher sentence.

"The latter charge is particularly concerning because it involved Mr Patel holding a large knife to the throat of another person whilst yelling an Islamic remark," Justice said, adding it was during a "road rage" accident.

According to police, Patel sent texts to 52 people in October 2015 containing links to websites showing violent videos and was caught with 62 videos on DVDs, USBs and a laptop and an iPod.

In one video, 14 men in military uniform, possibly Iraqi soldiers, knelt in a row with their hands behind their backs while two men proceeded down the row shooting the victims in the back of their heads.

Another video showed a man in an orange jumpsuit being beheaded in a desert by a masked man, after which another man was led out and shot.

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