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Miss Hitler pageant entrant Alice Cutter and her ex-partner Mark Jones were sentenced alongside Garry Jack and Connor Scothern.

Four neo-Nazi “diehards” convicted of being members of the banned terrorist group National Action have been jailed.

Former Miss Hitler beauty pageant contestant Alice Cutter and her Nazi-admiring former partner Mark Jones were convicted of membership of a terrorist group after a trial in March, alongside co-accused Garry Jack and Connor Scothern.

Sentencing at Birmingham Crown Court on Tuesday, Judge Paul Farrer QC told Jones he had played “a significant role in the continuation of the organisation”, after its ban in December 2016.

Turning to Cutter, he said: “You never held an organisational or leadership role”, but added she was a “trusted confidante” of one the group’s leaders, as well as being in a “committed relationship” with Jones.

Extreme right-wing group National Action (NA), labelled “racist, anti-Semitic and homophobic” by the then-home secretary Amber Rudd, was banned in December 2016 after a series of rallies and incidents, including praise of the murder of MP Jo Cox.

Cutter, 23, who entered the Miss Hitler beauty contest as Miss Buchenwald – a reference to the Second World War death camp – had denied ever being a member, despite attending the group’s rallies, in which banners reading “Hitler was right” were raised.

Jurors were also shown messages in which the waitress joked about gassing synagogues, using a Jew’s head as a football, and exclaiming “Rot in hell, bitch”, after hearing of Ms Cox’s murder.

Jones, a former member of the British National Party’s youth wing and a rail engineer, was described at trial as a “leader and strategist” who played a “prominent and active role”.

The 25-year-old, originally the group’s London regional organiser, acknowledged posing for a photograph while delivering a Nazi-style salute and holding an NA flag in Buchenwald’s execution room during a trip to Germany in 2016.

Prosecutors described Cutter and Jones, both of Sowerby Bridge, near Halifax, West Yorkshire, as well as Jack and Scothern as “active” group members, even after the ban.

Jack, 24, of Heathland Avenue, Shard End, Birmingham, had attended almost every meeting of NA’s Midlands sub-group.

He also had a previous conviction, from before the group was banned for plastering Birmingham’s Aston University campus with NA’s racially charged stickers, some reading “Britain is ours, the rest must go.”

Scothern, 19, of Bagnall Avenue, Nottingham, was “considered future leadership material” and had distributed almost 1,500 stickers calling for a “final solution” – in reference to the Nazis’ genocide against Jews.

Cutter was jailed for three years, while Jones received a five-and-a-half-year prison term.

Jack was sentenced to four-and-a-half years in prison, and Scothern was handed a sentence of detention for 18 months.

Speaking ahead of sentencing, the director of public prosecutions Max Hill QC described NA members as “diehards” who “hark back to the days of not just anti-Semitism, but the Holocaust, the Third Reich in Germany”.
Express & Star

Unemployed gardener, 53, given whole-life sentence for murder of MP that judge said was inspired by white supremacism

An extreme rightwing terrorist has been sentenced to prison for the rest of his life for the murder of the Labour MP Jo Cox after a seven-day Old Bailey trial in which he made no effort to defend himself.

Thomas Mair repeatedly shot and stabbed Cox in an attack during the EU referendum campaign in June. While attacking her he was saying: “This is for Britain”, “keep Britain independent”, and “Britain first”, the court heard.

The judge said Mair would have to serve a whole-life sentence due to the “exceptional seriousness” of the offence: a murder committed to advance a cause associated with Nazism.

Mr Justice Wilkie refused Mair’s request to address the court, saying he had already had opportunities to explain himself, and had not done so.

Cox, the judge told Mair, was not only a “passionate, open-hearted, inclusive and generous” person, but a true patriot. He, on the other hand “affected to be a patriot”.

“It is evident from your internet searches that your inspiration is not love of country or your fellow citizens, it is an admiration for Nazis and similar anti-democratic white supremacist creeds,” Wilkie said. “Our parents’ generation made huge sacrifices to defeat those ideas and values in the second world war. What you did … betrays those sacrifices.”

Mair had “betrayed the quintessence of our country, its adherence to parliamentary democracy”. By not having the courage to admit his crime, the judge added, he had forced the prosecution to prove their case in detail, which “no doubt deliberately”had increased the anguish of his victim’s family.

Mair struck on 16 June after Cox got out of a car in Birstall, a small market town in West Yorkshire that was part of her Batley and Spen constituency. He shot her twice in the head and once in the chest with a sawn-off .22 hunting rifle before stabbing her 15 times.

The MP died shortly afterwards in the back of an ambulance, despite emergency surgery. She was 41, and the mother of two children, then aged five and three.

Evidence quickly gathered by police, including books found at Mair’s home and an examination of his online activities, showed him to be obsessed with the Nazis, notions of white supremacy and apartheid-era South Africa.

He underwent an examination by a psychiatrist, who could find no evidence that he was not responsible for his actions as a consequence of poor mental health.

Mair was also found guilty of grievous bodily harm against a passerby, Bernard Carter-Kenny, a retired coal miner who was stabbed when he came to Cox’s aid, possession of a firearm with intent and possession of a dagger. The jury took just over 90 minutes to reach its verdicts.

Mair showed no reaction as the judge denied his request to address the court and was led to the cells. Brendan Cox, the MP’s grieving husband, watched as other family members hugged and wiped away tears.

Earlier, Mair had rolled his eyes as Brendan Cox read a statement to the court in which he paid tribute to his wife and said the family had no interest in her killer.

“We feel nothing but pity for him; that his life was so devoid of love that his only way of finding meaning was to attack a defenceless woman who represented the best of our country in an act of supreme cowardice.”

Speaking outside the Old Bailey after the verdicts, he added: “To the world, Jo was a member of parliament, a campaigner, an activist and many other things. But first and foremost she was a sister, a daughter, an auntie, a wife, and above all a mum to two young children who love her with all their being.

“All their lives they have been enveloped in her love, excited by her energy and inspired by her example. We try now not to focus on how unlucky we were to have her taken from us, but how lucky we were to have her in our lives for so long.”

He also thanked the hundreds of people – on the day of the murder, and the weeks that followed – for their bravery and compassion. “This has been Britain at its best – compassionate, courageous and kind. It’s given us great strength and solace.”

The Labour leader, Jeremy Corbyn, said the murder was “an attack on democracy, and has robbed the world of an ambassador of kindness and compassion”.

Amber Rudd, the home secretary, said the murder was a “shocking and senseless” attack on the values of democracy and tolerance. “I am determined that we challenge extremism in all its forms including the evil of far-right extremism and the terrible damage it can cause to individuals, families and communities.”

After the verdicts, Sue Hemming, head of special crime and counter-terrorism at the Crown Prosecution Service, said: “Mair has offered no explanation for his actions but the prosecution was able to demonstrate that, motivated by hate, his premeditated crimes were nothing less than acts of terrorism designed to advance his twisted ideology.”

Following the verdicts, Richard Whittam QC, prosecuting, told the court that Mair had committed a terrorism offence when he murdered Cox, although the jury had not been told that he was regarded as a terrorist.

There were two reasons for this. Mair was charged with murder, which is a crime under common law and not an offence under counter-terrorism legislation; and the jury was only to be asked to decide whether or not Mair had committed the crime of murder. It was not asked to consider his motivation.

Prosecutors acknowledge privately that the febrile atmosphere in which the EU referendum campaign was waged appears certain to have contributed to Mair’s decision to murder his MP, but this played no part in their case. There was no need to refer to the referendum in order to establish his guilt.

The evidence against the 53-year-old unemployed gardener had been overwhelming. He lived in Birstall and witnesses to the attack included people who had known him all his life. The incident was also captured on CCTV, as was his escape.

Police later found that a library of far-right literature in his bedroom, including books on the Nazis and white supremacism. On top of the bookshelf was a gold-coloured Third Reich eagle with a swastika.

Examination of his browsing history revealed that he had been searching for material about the British national party, apartheid, the Ku Klux Klan, prominent Jewish people, Israel and matricide.

In his closing speech, Whittam said Cox had been the victim of a cowardly attack. “The sheer brutality of her murder and the utter cowardice of her murderer bring the two extremities of humanity face to face,” he said.

Mair never admitted the offences, but nor did he deny them. When he appeared at the Old Bailey last month via videolink from Belmarsh prison in south-east London, he refused to enter a plea. He made clear that he could see and hear what was happening in court, but when asked how he pleaded, he stared down the camera and said nothing. During the trial he did not offer a defence.

As a consequence, not guilty pleas were entered on his behalf to all four charges, as required by law.

Each day during the trial, Mair remained immobile and impassive, staring straight ahead and rarely looking around. He used a notepad, but instead of making notes about the trial, he could be seen to be writing down the names of people in court whom he recognised: a TV journalist, an MP from a neighbouring constituency and a member of Cox’s family.

It was, an observer said, as though he was recording the identities of the people who had come to see him have his day in court.

Speaking from the witness box after the verdict had been announced Cox’s husband said Mair had failed. “The killing of Jo was in my view a political act, an act of terrorism,” he told the court. “But in the history of such acts it was perhaps the most incompetent and self-defeating. An act driven by hatred, which instead has created an outpouring of love. An act designed to drive communities apart which has instead pulled them together. An act designed to silence a voice which instead has allowed millions of others to hear it.

“Jo is no longer with us, but her love, her example and her values live on. For the rest of our lives we will not lament how unlucky we were to have her taken from us, but how unbelievably lucky we were to have her in our lives for so long.”

The Guardian

Zack Davies told onlookers that he had carried out the assault on Dr Sarandev Bhambra in revenge for the death of the soldier Lee Rigby

A loner fascinated with far right ideologies and violent video games screamed “white power” as he launched a racially-motivated machete and hammer attack on a dentist of Asian origin, a court has heard.

As he was led away by police, Zack Davies told onlookers that he had carried out the assault on Dr Sarandev Bhambra in revenge for the death of the soldier Lee Rigby, who was killed by Islamist extremists outside a barracks in south-east London.

He also later claimed that the British Isis terrorist nicknamed Jihadi John was an inspiration for the attack, which left 24-year-old Bhambra with terrible injuries to his head, back and hand.

Davies, 26, from Mold in north Wales, was found guilty of attempting to murder Bhambra, who is still recovering from his injuries.

Outside Mold crown court, Bhambra’s family argued Davies had committed an act of terrorism. They said if the men’s ethnicities had been reversed the family had no doubt it would have been reported as an act of terror.

Bhambra’s brother, Dr Tarlochan Singh Bhambra, said in a statement: “Sarandev was singled out because of the colour of his skin. We are in no doubt that had the racial disposition of this case been reversed this would be reported as an act of terror with a wider media coverage.

“We as a family have listened intently to the evidence … and are in no doubt given the racial and political motivation that this should be rightly defined as an act of terrorism. By his own admission Zack Davies had extreme neo-Nazi views and is a member of a white supremacist organisation.”

He said his brother, who was born in Leeds, was a young man of whom his family was immensely proud and who had just started out on his chosen career. “This cowardly assault has left him with life-changing injuries. Sarandev is currently undergoing an extensive programme of rehabilitation.”

Judge Rhys Rowlands sent Davies to a high security hospital for psychiatric reports to be prepared before he sentences him in September.

“I hold the view he is an incredibly dangerous young man. If it is not going to be a hospital order it will be the longest possible sentence,” the judge said. “Dr Bhambra sustained the most dreadful life-changing injuries during a sustained racist attack on an innocent man, a member of a caring profession.”

There was applause from the public gallery as the verdict was returned.

The jury had heard how Davies would sit in his flat playing violent video games for six or seven hours a day. Expelled from school at 11 for bringing in a knife to school, Davies became a loner and admitted carrying a weapon with him every day since he was 15 because of his growing paranoia.

On 14 January he spotted Bhambra on the street in Mold at lunchtime and followed him to a Tesco supermarket, where he attacked him from behind with a claw hammer and 30cm-long machete in front of shoppers and children.

Bhambra was saved after an ex-soldier, Peter Fuller, stepped in to help. Davies told Fuller: “We are under attack,” but Fuller said what he was doing was madness and Bhambra had not done anything.

Davies admitted saying “white power” and “I did it for Lee Rigby,” during and after the attack. He told the court: “I got very fascinated by Jihadi John and was inspired by him. I even had a mask.”

He was described in court as a racist with a fascination for far right ideologies. In interview he told police that maybe the wrong side had won the second world war. The court heard items associated with white supremacy and Nazism were found at Davies’s home, including swastika badges and Combat 18 material. Davies apologised in court to the family of Lee Rigby and to Bhambra.

Asked if he considered it an act of terrorism, DCI Alun Oldfield, of North Wales police, said: “In our view this was an attempted murder, racially motivated.”

Gareth Preston, senior crown prosecutor for the Crown Prosecution Service Wales, said: “Zackery Davies is a dangerous young man whose distorted and racist views led him to commit a terrifying act of violence. This was an attack against a complete stranger, singled out for no other reason than his ethnicity.”

The Guardian

Labour’s Luciana Berger was called a ‘‘communist jewess” in tweet sent by Garron Helm

An internet troll accused of sending an antisemitic message to Labour MP Luciana Berger has been sentenced to four weeks in prison at Merseyside magistrates court.

Garron Helm, 21, from Litherland, north of Liverpool, tweeted a picture of the MP with a Holocaust yellow star superimposed on her forehead, with the hashtag “Hitler was right”. The tweet, which referred to Berger as a ‘‘communist jewess”, read: “You can always trust a Jew to show their true colours eventually.”

Helm send the tweet in the early hours of the morning on 7 August and claimed to have sent it in a state of anger and frustration. He pleaded guilty to sending an offensive, indecent or obscene message.

Berger, the MP for Liverpool Wavertree, said she hoped the jail term would deter would-be trolls. “This sentence sends a clear message that hate crime is not tolerated in our country,” she said. “I hope this case serves as an encouragement to others to report hate crime whenever it rears its ugly head.”

When police searched Helm’s home they found Nazi memorabilia including an SS flag and flags from the British neo-Nazi group National Action. Helm’s twitter account, called “Æthelwulf” – Old English for Noble Wolf – links to the National Action website, which promotes a “free, white Britain”.

The account includes a tweet that refers to David Cameron and Ed Miliband as “Jews masquerading as Englishmen” and many references to far-right politics.

Recent high-profile victims of trolling have included campaigner Caroline Criado-Perez, politician Stella Creasy and Chloe Madeley, daughter of TV presenters Richard Madeley and Judy Finnigan.

The Guardian

From 2014

A Ukrainian student has been jailed for at least 40 years for murdering an 82-year-old man and plotting explosions near mosques in racist attacks.

Pavlo Lapshyn stabbed Mohammed Saleem in Small Heath, Birmingham on 29 April, five days after arriving in the UK.

On Monday, Lapshyn, 25, admitted murder as well as plotting to cause explosions near mosques in Walsall, Tipton and Wolverhampton in June and July.

At the Old Bailey, he was told he would be jailed for life.

Mr Saleem was stabbed to death, just yards from his home, after attending prayers at his local mosque in Green Lane.

Lapshyn, from Dnipropetrovsk in Ukraine, was living in Birmingham while on a temporary work placement in the city when he killed Mr Saleem, a grandfather of 22.

He later planted three bombs near mosques in the West Midlands as part of a campaign he said was motivated by racial hatred.

He was arrested almost a week after an explosion in Tipton.

‘Hated non-whites’

The third device, which exploded near the Kanzul Iman mosque in Tipton on 12 July, was packed with nails.

Police said it was only because Lapshyn got the wrong time for Friday prayers that the blast did not cause mass injuries.

Sentencing, Mr Justice Sweeney told him: “You clearly hold extremist right-wing, white supremacist views and you were motivated to commit the offences by religious and racial hatred in the hope that you would ignite racial conflict and cause Muslims to leave the area where you were living.

“Such views, hatred and motivations have no place whatsoever in our multi-faith and multi-cultural society.”

He added Lapshyn held “views abhorrent to all right-thinking people which have no place in our multi-cultural society”.

During interviews, Lapshyn told police he had murdered the grandfather of 22 because he hated “non-whites”.

Prosecutor Peter Wright QC told the Old Bailey that PhD student Lapshyn had come to the UK on a work placement with software company Delcam.

The firm’s sponsorship programme in partnership with the National Metallurgy Academy in Ukraine is now under review following his crimes.

Lapshyn’s apartment, above Delcam’s offices in Birmingham, were raided by police who found chemicals and bomb-making equipment for another three devices.
‘White power’

They also discovered a camera containing 455 photographs and 98 videos. Some of them showed Lapshyn detonating homemade bombs in the Ukrainian countryside. The camera also included shots of him making bombs.

The force’s anti-terrorism unit also discovered apparent anonymous notes in the apartment which he planned to use to taunt police.

One featured a photograph of the hunting knife, next to which Lapshyn had written “Mohammed Saleem was killed by”.

He also referred to a police reward for information, saying “£10,000 small price, maybe £1m”, followed by a smiley face, and the phrase “white power”.

The court heard Lapshyn had a video game on his laptop called Ethnic Cleansing and also posed for white a supremacist website with the knife.

Defending, Richard Atkins QC said “we accept that his crimes are grave” and “the appropriate penalty we submit is life with a substantial minimum term”.

Mr Atkins told the court that Lapshyn is being kept in segregation and that the only person he speaks to regularly is his father.

In an interview with the BBC, Lapshyn’s father, Sergey Lapshyn, said he did not believe his son was a racist.

“Among his acquaintances were people of different ethnic backgrounds, and I have never seen that (racism),” he said.

He added his son could be “a bit tight-lipped” but was not calculating, as police had described him.

Speaking from his home in Dnepropetrovsk, Lapshyn’s father confirmed his own mother was a Muslim during her childhood.

Lapshyn’s father said his son knew his grandmother was a member of the (largely Muslim) Tatar community at the time of the former Soviet Union.

“We never discussed religious problems and we always considered them to be very intimate,” he said.
‘Can’t move forward’

Mr Saleem’s family said their father had not done anything to deserve to die, other than be a Muslim.

In a statement read out in court, Mr Saleem’s daughter Shazia Khan said: “The shock and sadness of the reality is impossible to accept, yet alone accept and move on.

“We can’t move forward, the murder has disabled our minds in every emotional way possible.”

Speaking after the sentencing, Assistant Chief Constable Marcus Beale from West Midlands Police said Lapshyn was “very definitely driven by an extreme right-wing ideology and white supremacist ideology”.

Asked to describe Lapshyn’s manner in police interview, he said: “He was matter-of-fact, he was cold, he was callous.

“I do not think he has shown any remorse or regret for the crimes that have taken place.”

BBC News

From 2013



A former member of a far-right group has been jailed for three years for making explosives in his home, including a pipe bomb.

Darren Tinklin, 24, from Blackwood, Caerphilly county, had admitted two charges of making explosives and possessing a firearm.

Tinklin had not wanted to injure and had not meant to create any risk, Newport Crown Court heard.

He had kept right-wing paraphernalia, including items with Nazi SS symbols.

He also had a t-shirt which said “100% fascist”.

Cardiff Recorder Nicholas Cooke said he must send a “stern message to those who flirt with the manufacture of devices of this kind”.

He said: “Ideas and political affiliations may come and go but there is a potential threat presented by someone who harbours an interest in explosives and extremist views.

“I cannot completely ignore that.”

The court heard that Tinklin gave up his right-wing political interests in 2005, and although he had downloaded a bomb-making manual, he had never opened the files.

Mr Cooke referred to Tinklin’s drug problem, saying it could lead to irresponsibility which coupled with an interest in explosives was a cause for concern.

He added there was the risk of explosive materials falling into the wrong hands.

However he gave him credit for his guilty plea but warned that people involved with explosives would face stern custodial sentences.

Tinklin was sentenced to three years, less the 119 days he has spent on remand.

BBC News

From 2010

Police found 54 explosive devices from nail bombs to a booby-trapped cigarette packet at Terrance Gavan’s home



A BNP member who spent a decade building up a cache of weapons in a bedroom hideaway was jailed for 11 years today.

Bus driver Terrance Gavan manufactured highly dangerous firearms and explosives at the home where he lived with his mother in Batley, West Yorkshire.

Police discovered 54 improvised bombs including nail bombs and a booby-trapped cigarette packet, as well as 12 firearms.

The former soldier told detectives that he had “a fascination with things that go bang”, the Old Bailey heard.

But Gavan also had a “strong hostility” towards immigrants, the court heard, and planned to target an address he had seen on a television programme that he believed was linked to the 7 July bomb attacks in London.

He told police he was a BNP member and letters to him from the party, as well as a copy of its magazine Hope and Glory, were found at his home.

The court heard that handwritten notebooks were found. One note said: “The patriot must always be ready to defend his country against enemies and their governments.”

Gavan pleaded guilty to 22 counts including collecting information useful for terrorism and possessing explosives and firearms.

The Guardian

From 2010

Judge hands Neil Lewington indefinite sentence and says he was ‘in process of embarking upon terrorist activity’

A neo-Nazi who planned a racist terror campaign in Britain was today given an indefinite prison sentence at the Old Bailey.

Neil Lewington wanted to emulate the Oklahoma bomber, Timothy McVeigh, and the Soho nail bomber, David Copeland, and kept videos detailing their attacks at his home.

The 44-year-old unemployed electrician, of Tilehurst, Reading, was found out after being arrested at Lowestoft railway station, in Suffolk, for drunkenly abusing a female conductor.

When he was stopped and searched in October last year, police found he was carrying components for two “viable improvised incendiary devices”. Police then discovered a bomb factory in his bedroom.

Anti-terror officers found evidence that he planned to make shrapnel bombs in tennis balls and use them to target Asian families.

Their discoveries included nearly 9lb (4kg) of weedkiller, pyrotechnic powders, fuses and igniters.

They also found a notebook entitled Waffen SS UK Members’ Handbook, with a logbook of drawings of electronics and chemical devices.

The link between Lewington’s extremist views and his interest in explosives was illustrated by a note which said: “Compressed thermite grenade vs Paki front door.”

He also wrote a “mission statement” in which he boasted of two-man hit squads attacking “non-British people” at random. He told one woman that “the only good Paki was a dead Paki”, the court heard.

Lewington was given an indeterminate sentence for public protection and told he must serve at least six years after being convicted of having explosives with intent to endanger life and preparing for terrorism.

He was also found guilty of two charges of possessing articles for terrorism including weedkiller, firelighters and three tennis balls, two counts of having documents for terrorism, and one allegation of having explosives.

“This man, who had strong if not fanatical rightwing leanings and opinions, was on the cusp of embarking on a campaign of terrorism against those he considered non-British,” Brian Altman QC, prosecuting, said.

“In addition to his extreme views on race and ethnicity, the defendant had an unhealthy interest in bombers as well as bombings.

“He admired, and might soon have emulated, the bombers about whom he possessed two compilation videotapes had he not been captured, albeit quite fortuitously.”

Judge Peter Thornton said Lewington was “a dangerous man, somebody who exhibits emotional coldness and detachment You would not have been troubled by the prospect of endangering somebody’s life.”

Thornton said the devices Lewington was found with at Lowestoft were made “to a very high standard”, and the igniters and timers only needed wiring up for them to be set off.

“These were dangerous firebombs, meticulously constructed, all set to go,” he added.

Thornton said that while Lewington had selected no specific target to attack, he “clearly had in mind” Asian and black people.

“You were in the process of embarking upon terrorist activity,” he said. “You were going to use or threaten action involving either serious violence to people or serious damage to property.

“This action was designed to intimidate non-white people and it was for the purpose of pursuing the ideological cause of white supremacy and neofascism, albeit in a rather unsophisticated way.”

The Guardian

From 2009

A postman who waged a hate campaign in which he posted letters and packages containing “overtly racist and depraved threats” to the attorney general and around 150 other targets has been jailed for four years.

Jefferson Azevedo, 45, also sent packages laced with white powder at the height of the US anthrax scare, and placed a hoax bomb on a bridge.

London’s Southwark crown court heard that he singled out individuals because of their support for foreign nationals in Britain or their opposition to the British National party.

Azevedo, of Portsmouth, targeted MPs, solicitors, media organisations, charities, schools, mosques and churches, as well as restaurants and car rental companies.

Some of his packages contained caustic soda. One person was slightly burned after coming into contact with the chemical, while another suffered a skin rash and many people were left “extremely frightened”, the court heard.

One victim, Julius Klein, 79, whose family was killed in the Holocaust, said he felt traumatised by a letter he received bearing a swastika.

The judge, Peter Testar, told Azevedo: “I find a significant aggravating factor in this case was the sheer nastiness which was directed against individuals. I can’t ignore the fact these offences seem to have be racially aggravated.”

Azevedo sent hate mail to the Royal Navy’s dockyard at Portsmouth, the Voluntary Overseas Organisation, and the Slough offices of the mobile telecoms company O2.

He pleaded guilty to 19 charges spanning February 2003 to March last year, and asked for a further 140 to be considered.

Alex Agbamu, prosecuting, said Azevedo had explained after his arrest that “he wanted publicity because of his concerns over immigration” and “intended to frighten”.

“He said he had the idea from the US when anthrax had been sent through the post to various people in that country,” the court heard. “He said he had carried out research in the public library, in newspapers and on the internet. If he found a story he was interested in, he would do what he could to find out how to contact the individuals concerned.”

The postman carried out his campaign in several stages. The first batch of letters, in January 2004, were sent in retaliation against plans to turn a former naval air station in Lee-on-Solent into an asylum centre.

A year later, he sent a tin foil wrap with something rattling inside it to the Buckingham Gate offices of the then attorney general, Lord Goldsmith. Fifty staff, including the senior law officer, were evacuated as a precaution.

Azevedo responded to a campaign to prevent a Portsmouth schoolgirl and her family from being sent back to Syria by sending letters containing caustic soda, some with the message: “If they be black, send them back.”

In March last year, he sent hate mail to a number of residents in Portsmouth and the West Midlands bearing a swastika and the warning: “Ethnic cleansing coming soon to this area.”

William Mosley, defending, told the court his client had a background of depression that had “coloured and overshadowed much of his adult life”.

“It made him a solitary individual who has always had difficulty making friends. And this perhaps led to an outpouring of frustration in the way we have seen,” Mosley said.

Outside court, Detective Inspector John Geden said: “This was nothing less than a terror campaign. Some of his victims were extremely frightened by what occurred. If his intent was to cause upset and chaos, he has certainly done that.”

The Guardian

From 2008

A former British National party candidate who stockpiled explosive chemicals and ball bearings in anticipation of a future civil war was today jailed for two and a half years.

As he has already spent nearly a year in custody, however, he is likely to be released within six months.

Robert Cottage, aged 49, from Colne, Lancashire, had pleaded guilty to possession of the chemicals. He was acquitted after two trials on charges of conspiracy to cause explosions.

Sentencing Cottage at Manchester’s crown square court, Mrs Justice Swift said he continued to hold views “that veer towards the apocalyptic”. She added that his actions had been “criminal and potentially dangerous” but said there was a low risk of his committing further offences.

“It is important to understand that Cottage’s intention was that if he ever had to use the thunder flashes, it was only for the purpose of deterrence,” Mrs Justice Swift said.

Cottage had believed that, as he saw it, “the evils of uncontrolled immigration” would lead to civil war, which would be imminent and inevitable, she said.

“The pre-sentence report says Cottage continues to hold views that veer towards the apocalyptic. The risk of further offending of the same type is low but it cannot be ruled out.”

The judge said she accepted that Cottage’s intention had been to hold on to the chemicals, which included ammonia, hydrogen peroxide and hydrochloric acid, until the outbreak of civil disturbance.

But she warned: “In letting off any such thunder flash, mistakenly believing you were under threat, you may have caused injury to some innocent person.”

Alistair Webster QC, Cottage’s counsel, told the court his client accepted that he had bought the potassium nitrate and sulphur with the intention of manufacturing gunpowder, but said this would have been used only to create thunder flash-style bangers to scare off intruders.;

Cottage, who stood three times unsuccessfully for the BNP in local council elections, was arrested last September after police found the stockpile of chemicals at his home in Talbot Street, Colne.

The police took action after Cottage’s wife told a social worker of her concerns about the items he was storing and, and about her husband’s stated belief that immigration was out of control.

Police also found ball bearings and a document about bomb-making from the do-it-yourself explosives-making manual The Anarchist Cookbook on his computer. He also had air pistols, crossbows and a stockpile of food.

“I believe it is everyone’s God-given right to defend themselves and their families if they are attacked,” Cottage told the court during his trial. “The breakdown of the financial system will inevitably put an unbearable strain on the social structures of this country.”

Cottage claimed in court that, with the armed forces in the Middle East and the police insufficiently trained, the authorities would be unable to offer people protection.

He added that immigration was a luxury that Britain could not afford, but that he drove a bus for children with disabilities and had a good relationship with the Asian children among them.

A second man, David Jackson, 62, a dentist, was also charged with conspiracy to cause explosions but was cleared after the jury twice failed to reach verdicts.

A BNP spokesman said after sentencing that the prosecution had been brought for political reasons. “We’re not condoning it, but it’s a quid pro quo to appease the Muslims,” said Dr Phil Edwards, of the BNP.

“To keep them quiet, we’ll snatch someone from white society. We certainly don’t support the bloke. We condemn all forms of violence … but I wouldn’t have thought you could do any harm with what he had.”

Dr Edwards said Cottage would not be standing as a candidate for the BNP again. “We never have anyone in the party with criminal convictions,” he said, because “lefties and people on your newspaper” would publicise the fact.
The Guardian

From 2007