A man who trained a dog to do Nazi Salutes when he said "Sieg Heil" or "gas the Jews" has denied committing a hate crime at a trial in Scotland. Markus Meechan, 29, was arrested after YouTube footage of his girlfriend's pug responding to Nazi slogans went viral.
Meechan had taught the tiny canine to jump up alertly and offer its paw in a fashion similar to a Nazi salute whenever he said slogans.
He shared numerous clips of the animal responding to his calls in a video entitled 'M8 yer dugs a Nazi' on his YouTube channel, Count Dankula.
The video has now been watched almost 3,000,000 times and Count Dankula has over 40,000 subscribers.
The Lanarkshire man even included a scene of the pug watching footage Adolf Hitler's speech to a rally at the 1936 Berlin Olympics.
At an ongoing trial in Airdrie Sheriff Court, he is accused of posting an anti-Semitic clip that could cause fear and alarm and stir up hatred on religious grounds, according to The Metro.
'M8 yur dugs a Nazi' was played to the court who were told that it is still racking up thousands of views every day.
In the video, Meecham says that he taught the dog the commands in a bid to wind-up his 29-year-old girlfriend Suzanne Kelly.
"My girlfriend is always ranting and raving about how cute and adorable her wee dog is, so I thought I would turn him into the least cute thing I could think of – which is a Nazi," he said in the video.
The video has already attracted a considerable degree of notoriety and criticism, which has led to Meechan appearing on Alex Jones's Infowars – a far-right current affairs show. Jones drew parallels between Meechan's treatment from UK authorities and George Orwell's dystopian novel 1984.
Meechan acknowledged that the video had the potential to cause offence in a second clip posted to YouTube.
He said: "I am not a racist at all, anybody who knows me could tell you that. I'm freaked out because everyone's going to actually think that I hate Jews now and I don't at all. I'm kind of panicked about it.
"Honestly I don't hate anyone. The whole purpose of this was just to annoy my girlfriend.
"I just want everyone to know that I don't wish any ill-will on any race or anything, it's just how shock comedy works. It was strictly made to annoy my girlfriend and give my friends something to laugh at.
"I am so sorry to the Jewish community for any offence I have caused them. This was never my intention and I apologise."