FINNS Party MP Jussi Halla-aho has said that he will not resign his position as chair of the parliamentary committee that deals with immigration issues after his conviction for ethnic agitation in Finland’s Supreme Court last week.

Halla-aho was fined for ethnic agitation, a charge known elsewhere as incitement to racial or ethnic hatred, in Finland’s highest court after two lower courts previously dismissed the charges. The MP was also convicted of defaming religion in the same comments, which appeared on his blog in 2008.

Finns Party leader Timo Soini has said that Halla-aho, a huge vote-getter for the party, will not be dismissed from the parliamentary group, after revising his previous comments that Members of Parliament convicted of race crimes should have no place in the party.

It is believed that Halla-aho intends to appeal his conviction by taking the matter to the European Court of Justice, after stating that the Supreme Court decision is not “divine truth,” but the personal interpretation of a few people.