Nazi Tommy Robinson has been found in contempt of court for “aggressively confronting and filming defendants” outside a court in Leeds.
Robinson live-streamed footage of defendants accused of sexual exploitation of young girls in breach of a reporting ban at court last May. He hoped to stir up racism.
The decision by High Court judges comes at the end of a two-day trial at the Old Bailey court in London.
Judge Dame Victoria Sharp said the video “gave rise to a substantial risk that the course of justice in that case would be seriously impeded”. “In our judgment, the respondent’s conduct in each of those respects amounted to a serious interference with the administration of justice,” she said.
“Detailed reasons for this decision will be handed down shortly. A hearing to decide the appropriate penalty will take place on a date to be fixed by the court.”
He is set to be sentenced on Friday of next week. Contempt of court carries a maximum sentence of two years in prison.
The decision is another blow to Robinson’s attempts to put himself at the head of the British far right and grow the movement.
It follows his humiliation in the European elections in May. Not only did he fail to become an MEP for the North West of England, he received a humiliating 2.2 percent of the vote and lost his £5,000 deposit.
This was the result of a Stand Up To Racism (SUTR) and Unite Against Fascism (UAF) campaign.
Robinson was previously sent down for 13 months after filming the trial in Leeds in June.After winning an appeal, he was released on bail last August and was set to face a retrial. The High Court granted permission for a retrial in at a hearing in May.
Robinson has used the process, which has dragged on for a year, to try to paint himself as a “free speech martyr”. Two “Free Tommy” rallies saw 15,000 and 6,000 far right supporters rally in Whitehall, central London, last summer.
The far right was later pushed back and outnumbered after anti-fascist mobilisations.
Around 300 of Robinson’s supporters—at their height—rallied outside the court on the first day of the trial.
While he’s suffered setbacks, the far right that could seek to regroup around a campaign if he’s sent back to prison. Anti-racists should celebrate—and be ready to keep up the fight against the far right.
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