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Former EDL leader Tommy Robinson jailed for 18 months for fraud

23 January 2014 General 7 Comments Email This Post Email This Post

TommyRobinson

Former EDL leader Tommy Robinson jailed for 18 months for fraud

BY IAN STEADMAN (New Statesman)

The English Defence League’s founder and former leader, Tommy Robinson, has been convicted and sentenced to 18 months in prison for mortgage fraud, reports the BBC. The fraud amounted to £160,000 over six months. The 31-year-old, from Luton, was sentenced at St Albans Crown Court after pleading guilty in November 2013.

Robinson – whose birth name is Stephen Yaxley-Lennon, and who goes by a range of different aliases – left the EDL in October 2013, to collaborate with the Quilliam Foundation think-tank on the subject of “counter-extremism”. Medhi Hasan wrote for the NS at the time about Robinson’s decision:

Can a fascist renounce fascism? Of course. Can he do it overnight? I’m not so sure. On 6 October, two days before his “defection” to Quilliam, Robinson tweeted that “sharia legalises paedophilia”; on 4 October, he claimed that Islam was “fuelling” a “global war/Holocaust on Christians”. On 2 October, he tried to intimidate a critic of the EDL by turning up unannounced at what Robinson (wrongly) believed was his home.

Forgive me my cynicism. At a press conference on the day he quit the EDL, the 30-year-old sunbed shop owner from Luton did not apologise for or acknowledge his previous anti-Muslim remarks; nor did he renounce, denounce or disown the EDL. So far, he seems only to have rebranded, rather than reformed, himself. Robinson, however, is an irrelevance. So, for that matter, is the EDL. The hate-filled antics of these balaclava-clad thugs have distracted us from a much bigger issue: Islamophobia went mainstream long ago, with the shameless complicity of sections of the press.

Look at the numbers. A Cardiff University study of 974 newspaper articles published about British Muslims between 2000 and 2008 found more than a quarter of them portrayed Islam as “dangerous, backward or irrational”; references to radical Muslims outnumbered references to moderate Muslims by 17 to one.

Look at the little-noticed conclusion of Lord Justice Leveson’s November 2012 report into the “culture, practices and ethics” of the press: “The identification of Muslims . . . as the targets of press hostility . . . was supported by the evidence seen by the inquiry.”

Look, above all else, at the way in which headlines, stories and columns reflect much of what Robinson says – without being tainted by the fascist whiff of the EDL.

“There is a two-tier system, where Muslims are treated more favourably than non-Muslims,” Robinson claimed in a speech in Leicester in February 2012. Consider, however, the lurid headline on the front of the Daily Express, in February 2007: “Muslims tell us how to run our schools”. Or the Daily Star’s splash in October 2008: “BBC puts Muslims before YOU”.

Spot the difference?

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7 Comments »

  1. Ahmed Abou-Zaid ;)

  2. I thought he’s stopped attacking Islam and Muslims (pinpointing his rhetoric to terrorist ONLY)….

  3. i had a personal talk with this man hes only getting whats coming to him wll he should been racist and mean and yes h is fraud

  4. GOD HAS NO RELIGION !!!! RELIGION IS DARKNESS AND IGNORANCE, BESTIALITY http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=rgHYp1dgTKs&feature=share&list=PLO8SwY6cQ5KPuYTKElBeWg98EJZYzc_wu&index=38

  5. Again? lool

  6. also Communications Security Establishment Canada (CSEC) used airport Wi-Fi to track wireless devices of thousands of airline passengers – even for days after they had departed the terminal.

    The technology was to be shared with the so-called ‘Five Eyes’ surveillance bloc composed of Canada, the United States, Britain, New Zealand and Australia.

    Ontario’s privacy commissioner Ann Cavoukian admitted she is “blown away” by news of the secret operation.

    also Conservative Party Stephen Harper and Benjamin Netanyahu (Apartheid-Israel) signed agreements:

    growth in SECURITY and INTELLIGENCE CO-OPERATION,
    enhanced DEFENSE and
    security relations,
    closer ACADEMIC TIES.

    No privacy for Canadians?

    rt.com/news/canada-snowden-spying-nsa-airport-442/

  7. Typical fringe extremist…bogus to the core

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