Hate crime legislation in Germany

Criminal Code of Germany (1998, as amended 2021; excerpts)


Section 46 [Principles of Sentencing]

(1) The guilt of the offender is the basis for sentencing. The effects which the sentence can be expected to have on the offender's future life in society shall be taken into account.

(2) When sentencing the court shall weigh the circumstances in favour of and against the offender. Consideration shall in particular be given to the motives and aims of the offender, in particular including racist, xenophobic, anti-Semitic or other motives evidencing contempt for human dignity; the attitude reflected in the offence and the degree of force of will involved in its commission; the degree of the violation of the offender's duties; the modus operandi and the consequences caused by the offence to the extent that the offender is to blame for them; the offender's prior history, his personal and financial circumstances; his conduct after the offence, particularly his efforts to make restitution for the harm caused as well as the offender's efforts at reconciliation with the victim.

(3) Circumstances which are already statutory elements of the offence must not be considered.