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Nathan Smith

Nathan Smith

The final man out of a group of seven far right sympathisers who beat up anti-fascist demonstrators in Liverpool was jailed after failing to turn up at his original hearing.

Nathan Smith, 21, was jailed for 14 months after admitting violent disorder and given an extra month for breaching his bail conditions.

On Thursday six men, said to be members or sympathisers of far right groups including the British National Party (BNP), were jailed for between nine and 17 months after they attacked a group of people headed for a benefit gig at News From Nowhere on Bold Street in July 2012.

Smith, of North Road, St Helens, failed to attend and a warrant was issued for his arrest.

Police picked him up at his home later that evening.

Patrick McLoughlin, defending, told the court that he had got his dates mixed up despite his mum being present at court on the right day.

He said Smith, an almost-qualified central heating engineer, originally from Huyton, had found his life going in a “reverse direction” after his parents split up and found support in the “family of the BNP”.

Smith was one of the men in the thick of the fighting which crashed into cafe Tabac on Bold Street on July 6 last year and was caught on camera punching and kicking at least two victims, one of whom was on the floor.

Judge Robert Trevor Jones, said: “The violence that was accepted yesterday when I sentenced your co-accused was unplanned but of course it was always going to be a volatile situation with a confrontation between two groups with opposing views.”

He added that Smith was “fairly and squarely” involved in the fighting.

Liverpool Echo

Liam Pinkham, Shane Calvert, The unnamed 17 year old, Peter Hawley

Liam Pinkham, Shane Calvert, The unnamed 17 year old, Peter Hawley

Six far-right sympathisers who ambushed people going to an anti-fascist benefit gig in front of shocked city centre onlookers have today been jailed.

The men pleaded guilty to violent disorder following an incident in Liverpool city centre on 6 July 2012.

Liam Pinkham, 35, from Birkenhead, was sentenced to 17 months in prison.

Michael Kearns 41, from Liverpool, was sentenced to 14 months in prison.

Matthew Coates, 22, from Southport, was sentenced to 10 months in prison.

Peter Hawley, 53, from Blackburn, was sentenced to 13 months in prison.

Shane Calvert, 32, from Blackburn, was sentenced to 14 months in prison.

Stephen Dumont, 18, from Netherley, has been sentenced to 5 months detention in a Youth Offenders’ Institution for this offence and a further 4 months for an offence of racially aggravated assault.

Nathan Smith had pleaded guilty to violent disorder at an earlier hearing but failed to turn up to court today and a bench warrant has now been issued for him.

During the case, the court heard that the men shared right wing views and had meant to disrupt an anti-fascist group benefit gig at the News from Nowhere bookshop in Bold Street in Liverpool city centre on 6 July 2012.

However, Anya Horwood, Senior Crown Advocate for CPS Mersey- Cheshire, said in court: “While this may have been the backdrop, what actually happened was a wanton act of public disorder which resulted in real fear, injury and damage.”

The defendants attacked members of the anti-fascist group as they walked up Bold Street and in the Tabac bar and cafe, which is near to the News from Nowhere bookshop, shortly before the benefit gig was due to begin.

Anya Horwood said: “This was an entirely unprovoked attack by the defendants and others. Fortunately, there were no serious injuries.”

After the sentences were handed out, Helen Morris, Senior Crown Prosecutor with the Crown Prosecution Service, Mersey- Cheshire, said: “The violence used by the defendants on that day caused real fear among the ordinary members of the public who just happened to have the misfortune to be in the area.

“They launched an unprovoked assault on their victims in a public place and were reckless as to the effect of that on anyone around them. These offences are serious and that’s reflected in the sentences imposed by the Court.”

Click Liverpool