At the time of his detention, Rošāns also had his computers and other electronics seized. They are to be returned to him, according to a source who messaged me through the Latvian social network draugiem.lv.
The source said that Fenikss was detained on a complaint from the Latvian internet discussion portal dialogi.lv, a strong advocate of measures to restrain hate speech on internet forums. While dialogi.lv has hosted discussions on a number of issues, including inter-ethnic relations in Latvia (a subject that draws rants in any number of forums in this country), it has posted permanent links to its "Internet without Hatred" (Internets bez naida) initiative.
My earlier post on Fenikss' detention has drawn no comment, which is no surprise. While there must be some readers who agree with my free-speech absolutist position (governments should not be given the power to intimidate or arrest people for their expressions alone), there is little sympathy for the content of what Rošāns or people like him write or say. Standing up for a Holocaust denying (or even a Holocaust supporting) crank's free speech rights is not going to draw the big crowds in the blogosphere.
My point remains -- the Latvian Security Police claim the right and use their police powers to repress the free speech of individuals such as the economist Dmitrijs Smirnovs and the far less sympathetic Valdis Rošāns. They are acting as a thought police.
They will stop acting as a thought police when they reject complaints based on expression alone. While the police have a duty to listen to my complaints, if I complain that my neighbor is wearing an irritatingly green shirt, the police should respond to this complaint by saying that there is no crime. Taste is not regulated by the criminal law. Nor should the criminal law of any democracy regulate pure speech and expression -- written and spoken words outside the most stringently narrow definitions of, say, the largely rejected clear and present danger standard in the US.