posted by: . | on: Thursday, 12 December 2013, 16:40
The sons of an English expat who left his £389,000 fortune to the British National Party in his will are battling in the High Court to claim the money.
When Northumbria-born Joseph Robson died in Alicante at the age of 81 in March 2010, he bequeathed his entire estate outside Spain - worth £389,000- to the British National Party, leaving his two sons, Jeremy and Simon, with £135 between them.
After their father's death, Mr Robson's sons launched a legal challenge to his will, insisting that their father was barred from giving his money to a British political party, because he had not been a registered UK voter in the five years before his death.
Now the BNP, represented by party Treasurer, Clive Jefferson, is battling against the sons' call for a ruling that the gift was illegal, and that their nationalist father had become a "foreigner" in the eyes of the law by the time he died.
Judge Richard Sheldon QC heard that Mr Robson, who was born in Ashington, Northumberland in 1928, and lived in Willow Tree Crescent, Lutterworth Leicestershire, after divorcing from his sons' mother in the 1970s, moved to Alicante on his retirement in 1992.
He made a will in 1996, leaving the whole of his worldly goods to the BNP, apart from a Spanish bank account containing just £135, which he bequeathed to Jeremy.
But the BNP ran into trouble when it tried to lay hands on the gift, the judge heard, after Mr Robson's sons claimed he was not legally permitted to make the political donation.
Barrister, Alex Troup, representing the executor of the will, told the judge that the sons claim Mr Robson failed to register on the UK electoral roll at any time during the five years prior to his death.
That meant that, under rules introduced by Tony Blair's Labour government in 2000 to curb "foreign donations" to British political parties, the expat was not entitled to make the gift, whether dead or alive.
Mr Troup explained that the Political Parties Elections and Referendums Act 2000 restricted "permissible donors" to UK political parties to those whose names had appeared on a UK electoral register "in the period of five years ending with the date of his death."
Phillip Capon, for the sons, told the judge that the rules mean that Mr Robson effectively died intestate and that, despite his wishes, his whole fortune ought to be handed to Jeremy and Simon.
Robert Grierson, representing Mr Jefferson, argued that the party had successfully overcome the problem in September 2011 by executing a deed of variation to the will which would see the money paid into a specially set up charitable trust, rather then to the party directly.
The trustees of the charity are Mr Jefferson, Nick Griffin's daughter Jennifer Matthys, and former leading National Front member, Patrick Harrington, who is now a key adviser to party leader, Nick Griffin.
But Mr Capon insisted that moving the cash into the trust would make no difference and could not legitimise an "illegal" political donation.
"The obligation under the Act is to pay the money back. The BNP is not entitled to the gift under this will. It does not have the lawful capacity under the Act to accept this gift. The gift fails and there is an intestacy," he told the court.
Mr Capon told the judge that Mr Jefferson, in his representative capacity as BNP Treasurer, could in theory face prosecution under the 2000 Act if the party was found to have accepted the payment illegally.
Mr Harrington, addressing the judge in person, argued that it would be "utterly unjust" for the party to be stripped of Mr Robson's bequest.
"One son was given nothing and the other was give less than £150. It seems pretty clear that the father didn't want the bulk of his estate to go to his two sons - he wanted it to go to a political party," he said.
"Mr Robson had every right to be on the electoral register but, for whatever reason, he was unaware of the provision that he had to be. The pathway can never lead to the sons, that can never happen," he added.
Denying that the BNP are fighting the case because they are badly in need of funds, he told the judge: "The BNP has received sizeable legacies as its support base tends to be amongst older people. It is not desperate for money."
Mr Harrington asserted that the money ought to be released to the trustees by the executor of the will because, "at this stage no one knows whether or not he was a permitted donor".
He promised that, were the cash released, "a large pool of voluntary BNP labour" would be "sitting in the British Library going through every electoral roll in the country" to find out if Mr Robson was registered to vote in any UK constituency in the five years before he died.
"His solicitor should have told him that he needed to be on the register," Mr Harrington said.
Expressing his preliminary views on the dispute, Judge Sheldon commented: "The deed of variation itself would suggest that the BNP were not satisfied that Mr Robson was a permissible donor.
"If the BNP had investigated whether or not Mr Robson was a permitted donor there would be no need for this hearing."
The judge reserved his decision on the dispute until a later date.
Posted: 12 Dec 2013 | There are 2 comments | make a comment/view comments
posted by: Adam Barnett | on: Thursday, 12 December 2013, 14:10
Islamist firebrand Anjem Choudary will attend a march against the drinking and sale of alcohol in Brick Lane tomorrow, the Advertiser can reveal.
The infamous leader of the group al-Muhajiroun said he hopes the rally will help convince Muslims and non-Muslims to “cut out alcohol from society altogether”.
The march on Friday by The Sharia Project, a group based in Waltham Forest with members in Whitechapel, will protest the drinking and sale of alcohol by Muslims in east London, which it says is sinful under Islamic law.
Mr Choudary today confirmed his links to the group after its spokesman Abu Ramaysah described him as one of its “mentors”.
He said: “I teach a lot of them and they have studied Sharia with me.”
Mr Choudary also criticised mosques in east London for tolerating the sale of alcohol, accusing them of doing so for money.
He said: “A Muslim knows it’s completely prohibited to sell alcohol.
“Some Muslims have gotten quite wealthy in the area of Brick Lane, and some of the so-called mosques in the area are benefiting from the sale of alcohol, so they keep their mouth closed.
He added: “The Whitechapel mosque and others take money from businesses in the area in donations at Friday prayers.
“This is not good enough. For non-Muslims it’s one thing. Muslims should know better.”
An East London Mosque official has said the rally is a publicity stunt that would “antagonise local people and business owners”.
On Monday, Mr Choudary defended three men sentenced to jail for threatening people drinking alcohol in east London in so-called “Muslim Patrols”.
He said the men, who were members of his group, were “fantastic individuals” who deserved to be “patted on the back”.
Posted: 12 Dec 2013 | There are 0 comments | make a comment/view comments
posted by: Simon Cressy | on: Wednesday, 11 December 2013, 17:31
I'm a huge fan of Monty Python, and one of my favourite sketches is the famous Dead Parrot sketch.
There can be few people who are unaware of the sketch and many Python aficionados like myself will be able to quote the lines from the script word for word.
If you haven't seen it the sketch involves an irate John Cleese returning a dead "Norwegian Blue" parrot to the pet shop where he bought it, with the shopkeeper, Michael Palin trying to convince Cleese that the parrot is in fact not actually dead but sleeping, after a long squawk.
So I put it to you dear readers that The English Democrats are a dead political party.
The English Democrats are no more! They have ceased to be! They've expired and gone to meet their maker!
Maybe I am being a bit premature with my condolences but take a close look at last weeks by election results and you will see the point I'm making.
In 2009 the English Democrat fortunes were running high, having just had its biggest victory of its short life, with Peter Davies winning the Doncaster mayoral election.
Things seemed to be on the up but then they made a fateful mistake, allowing their party to be taken over by a group of rejects from the BNP once Griffin's far right gang had began to implode.
The takeover upset a number of English Democrats including Mayor Peter Davies who quit the party in 2013 claiming the BNP invasion was unacceptable.
The English Democrats have been in a nose dive mode ever since, clearly illustrated in two council by elections held last week.
In Liverpool, one of those BNP rejects we mentioned, Steven McEllenborough received just 9 votes in the Riverside Ward By Election last Thursday.
If that wasn't bad enough English Democrat candidate Stephen Paxton finished in last place with just 6 votes in the Nuneaton and Bedworth Borough by election for Arbury ward.
Where has the English Democrat vote gone? Probably mostly to their sworn enemies in UKIP and with this series of failures the English Democrats look like they will take a hell of a beating in next years European Elections.
Maybe the English Democrats are just pining for the fjords? They are certainly bereft of life.
Posted: 11 Dec 2013 | There are 1 comments | make a comment/view comments
posted by: Rees Morgan | on: Thursday, 28 November 2013, 14:53
BNP boss Nick Griffin’s national socialist fixations have been showing again, this time evidenced by his junket to Moscow yesterday for a collective bleating session about the Greek government’s crackdown on his new-found pals in the nazi Golden Dawn party.
It appears that not everything was to his taste, however, as he couldn’t resist tweeting that he had been on a “horrible overnight flight.” It would be good to know who paid for the exalted Leader to be so reduced to such discomfort. Not him, we bet!
What was the Griffaloon doing just west of the Urals? We thought we’d let an internal page on the website of convicted Italian fascist terrorist Roberto Fiore explain. After all, it’s from the horse’s mouth (no offence to horses intended).
The Italian fascist statement says with customary pomposity: "On November 27, Russky Vestnik (The Russian Messenger) will hold a conference in the Slavinskaja Hall, Moscow, on the theme of “the limitation of freedoms in Western Europe.”
“The conference is organised by Russian experts and will host speeches from European politicians such as Roberto Fiore, a former MEP and leader of Forza Nuova; Nicholas Griffin, MEP and leader of the British National Party and the Greek Golden Dawn MP Matthaiopoulos”. It appears they – both Fiore and Griffin – did not know Matthaiopoulos’ has a first name, Artemis.
That was left out as was the fact that young Artemis has a certain measure of hardcore nazi “form”, not least the fact that he was also a “punk” musician who once sang about burning down the Greek parliament.
His band, for which he featured as bass guitarist, was the charmingly named Pogrom and was notorious for vicious racist lyrics. Among the songs that this mob performed was one titled “Auschwitz”, which contains – inter alia – the lines “F*** Wiesenthal. F*** Anne Frank. F*** the whole tribe of Abraham. The Star of David makes me vomit.”
As the Times reported last year” “The band’s best-known song is called “Speak Greek or Die”, an overt threat to immigrants coming to Greece, with the lyrics: “You come to our country, you don’t have any work, you’re starving, you bums, and you eat children, you speak Russian, you speak Albanian, but now you will speak proper Greek. Speak Greek or die, speak Greek or die.”
Matthaiopoulos’ new career may be seen as surprising as one song in his repertoire called “A Stroll in Parliament” includes the lyrics: “I’m going to go into the Parliament and I’ll burn it all down.”
Matthaiopoulos, incidentally, was the second nazi raver to warm a bench for Golden Dawn in the Greek parliament. The other is the thug George Germenis, who goes by the stage name Kaiadas; after the chasm where Ancient Spartans were said to have hurled their defective babies.
This “hero” led a black-clad crew of steroid-inflated Golden Dawn louts to an open-air market near Athens to smash the stalls of unlicensed migrant peddlers in September 2012. In an earlier incident, he was arrested for punching a 12-year-old girl.
Matthaiopoulos is reported to be a “close friend” of the daughter of the porcine Golden Dawn leader Nikolaos Michaloliakos, whose wife is also in Parliament, and who is currently in a prison cell, facing a charge sheet that includes belonging to a criminal organisation, murder, extortion, and involvement in the disappearance of up to 100 immigrants.
It was alongside such intellectual luminaries as the nazi Matthaiopoulos, the fascist Fiore and the Russian nationalists of Russky Vestnik that the BNP’s bloated and bumptious boss sat to consider “The problems arising from the promotion of a law which criminalises 'homophobia', thus limiting individual and family rights and the repression and persecution of political movements inspired by nationalist, populist and Christian beliefs.”
“In this sense,” the Italian fascists’ statement went on, “Greece is especially important and the case of Golden Dawn will be considered in detail.”
Other items on the agenda were “The prosecution of revisionist historians and researchers for so-called “crimes against history’” and “World Health Organisation directives asking national governments to introduce sex education classes from primary school, thus justifying de facto paedophile behaviours” .The mind can only boggle at the pearls of wisdom this agenda will have generated.
As the BNP’s star rapidly fades and Griffin faces personal and party wipe-out by UKIP, he is returning to what he knows best: unashamed, unapologetic extremism and finding comfort surrounded by Europe’s most extreme fascists and nazis.
We just hope Fiore and Matthaiopoulos didn’t order a curry…
Posted: 28 Nov 2013 | There are 1 comments | make a comment/view comments
posted by: . | on: Tuesday, 26 November 2013, 22:07
English Defence League (EDL) founder and former leader Stephen Yaxley-Lennon has admitted mortgage fraud offences.
He pleaded guilty to two counts of conspiring with others to obtain a mortgage by misrepresentation from the Abbey and Halifax building societies.
The 30-year-old, also known as Tommy Robinson, committed the offences in 2009.
Robinson's address and the court where he appeared cannot be named for legal reasons.
He was warned he could face a prison term when he is sentenced in the new year.
Earlier this year, Robinson was jailed for 10 months for using someone else's passport to travel to the USA.
He left the EDL last month, citing increasingly racist elements within the group.
Yaxley-Lennon founded the EDL in 2009 after five Muslim men demonstrated in Luton against a homecoming parade by the Royal Anglian Regiment.
Posted: 26 Nov 2013 | There are 0 comments | make a comment/view comments
posted by: Dominic Gover | on: Monday, 25 November 2013, 16:18
A drunken EDL supporter roughed up a Church of England bishop at a public rally in Yorkshire.
The Bishop of Pontefract was manhandled at what was scheduled as a peace rally in Wakefield town centre, West Yorkshire.
Bishop Tony Robinson had just come from mass to address 100 people at a march against the anti-Islam group when he was accosted
According to witnesses, the intruder was aged around 30, dressed in an English Defence League sweatshirt and reeked of booze.
"It was shocking," said eyewitness Sally Kincaid. "The bishop was just talking and suddenly this big guy came out from behind and started shouting about grooming. It was all quite surreal and he looked drunk.
"A few people got around him and he was handed over to the police."
Bishop Robinson told IBTimes UK that efforts had been made in the past to reach out to the EDL but had failed.
"They are not always keen to debate in a non-confrontational way. It seems to me that we should talk with people like the EDL to find out why they are angry and we have tried to do that with the EDL," he said.
"This showed there are people who just want to shout obscenities."
About 100 EDL supporters descended on Wakefield for an event that was opposed by a community coalition. A counter-demonstartion of around the same size was staged by an umbrella group called 'We are Wakefield.' Police made 11 arrests including some for breach of the peace.
Assistant Chief Constable Mark Milsom said. "The arrests we made were focused on preventing persons provoking trouble. Our swift action ensured that the genuine protesters and the Christmas shoppers were kept safe and feeling safer."
Posted: 25 Nov 2013 | There are 0 comments | make a comment/view comments
posted by: Liam Trent | on: Saturday, 23 November 2013, 15:36
Just hearing that the EDL demo today in Wakefield has been a complete disaster for the struggling EDL.
Only 150 members of the far right group managed to crawl out of the pub to visit the West Yorkshire city.
Once there, the organisers managed to forget to bring a megaphone that actually worked, so only a handful of people could hear the usual drivel being preached by usual faces.
Most of the local people seemed keen to ignore the tiny EDL demo, they had far more important issues on their mind like Xmas shopping.
Posted: 23 Nov 2013 | There are 3 comments | make a comment/view comments
posted by: Liam Trent | on: Saturday, 23 November 2013, 02:53
Over the years we have witnessed numerous fallouts and leadership battles within The National Front.
Who could possibly forget the infighting in 1989 that witnessed two rival factions of the NF stand against each other in the Vauxhall By Election with both sides trading insults and punches at the election count.
The modern day National Front is no different and is comparable to a cheaply made television soap opera, lots of drama but with very little substance.
So it should come as no surprise that there is a new internal battle erupting within the party, splitting the NF into two halves.
One faction, led by the former NF chairman Ian Edward has seized control of the official National Front website, changing the hosting company, removing most of the content and changing the websites passwords.
Ian Edward resigned his position as NF Chairman earlier in the year with Kevin Bryan being chosen to be the new leader of the party.
Bryan claims that Ian Edward along with Bernadette Jaggers and Steve Rowland have been causing as much trouble as possible for the party.
Edward is still officially registered as Party Chairman and Nominating Officer with the Electoral Commission and has refused to remove himself from the registered documents.
The faction led by Kevin Bryan have submitted new paperwork naming Bryan as the new chairman and Aberdeen's Dave McDonald as Nominating Officer, yet The Electoral Commission have refused to accept the changes until Ian Edward signs the relevant forms.
Steve Rowland has also been keeping himself busy in the background, ringing around the various members, attempting to drum up support for the Ian Edward group.
Edwards group is claiming that it has the support of six branches yet this figure has been disputed by Kevin Bryan.
Time will tell which group will wrestle control of the NF, we hope it is a long drawn out battle.
Posted: 23 Nov 2013 | There are 1 comments | make a comment/view comments
posted by: Simon Cressy | on: Thursday, 21 November 2013, 23:56
Two far right extremists from the EDL have been jailed this week for petrol bombing a Gloucester mosque in a revenge attack following the brutal death of Drummer Lee Rigby.
Clive Ceronne, a 37-year-old security guard was jailed for four and a half years for the attack with his protege 20 year old Ashley Juggins, receiving a three and a half year jail term.
The two men drove to the Masjid-E-Noor mosque following evening prayers in June and waited until 12:50 am in Cerrone's car.
Juggins poured out a can of petrol in the entranceway of the mosque and set it alight using a burning envelope.The pair then made their escape in the car as the blaze began to take hold.
Fortunately, a passing motorist managed to put out the fire with a fire extinguisher as local residents attempted in vain to fight the fire with buckets of water.
The quick thinking motorist has never been identified or traced by the police.
Jailing the men the judge told them 'Lee Rigby was killed 27 days prior to this offence and although it has not been openly declared by either of your advocates as a reason for this attack I do not regard it as a co-incidence that it should follow so soon after his death.
'Ninety-nine per cent of the population of this country, irrespective of their colour or creed, will have been horrified by the circumstances surrounding that tragic killing.
'After his death there were a series of arson attacks on mosques across the country - Grimsby, Harlow, Haywards Heath, Luton. Those attacks were termed hate crimes and I have no doubt this offence was driven by hate.'
The judge told Cerrone "I have no doubt that you have an enduring hatred for followers of Islam and you are quite unwilling or unable to differentiate between the tiny minority who have extremist views and the vast majority of law abiding citizens who, for instance, worship at the Gloucester mosque.
'In short, your views are or were equally extreme as the various persons you sought revenge against.
'Such extremist views when they lead to activity of this kind destabilise the community, breed distress and very often destroy bridge building. This is precisely what extremists want.
'In short, you played into their hands to provide propaganda to be used against the population at large.'
Apart from being a member of the EDL, Cerrone is also listed as being the Gloucester contact for The New British Union, the tinpot group setup by former Scottish BNP organiser Gary Raikes.
Ceronne, from Gloucester, and Juggins from Cheltenham, both pleaded guilty to arson being reckless whether life was endangered on June 18.
Posted: 21 Nov 2013 | There are 0 comments | make a comment/view comments
posted by: Dominic Gover | on: Monday, 18 November 2013, 17:54
The demise of the English Defence League (EDL) was being predicted after a march by the far-right group in Exeter drew only 200 people.
A counter-demonstration against the EDL being in the city was attended by four times as many people.
The low turnout was heralded as a sign that a terminal decline of the anti-Islam group is underway.
Ahead of the march, new chairman Tim Ablitt told IBTimes UK the event in Exeter would show how well the EDL was adapting to life following the resignation of founder and leader Tommy Robinson.
Devon and Cornwall police arrested four people at the event. Officers held two men on suspicion of being drunk and two other suspects were found to be carrying offensive weapons.
Matthew Collins of anti-fascism group Hope not Hate, said the EDL had run out of things to say.
No EDL spokesman has emerged
Collins told IBTimes UK: "They had a short lived peak following the killing and now they are back to the sort of turn-out they were getting before that. The organisation is in terminal decline and the cause of it is boredom."
Exeter Together organised the well-attended counter-demonstration. Spokeswoman Hannah Packham said: "Exeter has united in saying that we love the rich diversity of the city, which helps to make it the great place it is.
"Our message is clear: the EDL with their racist, divisive politics are not welcome in Exeter."
Posted: 18 Nov 2013 | There are 5 comments | make a comment/view comments