A New Low in the Persecution of Tommy Robinson

“Fake news” doesn't even begin to describe it.

On Friday, the British judiciary lifted reporting restrictions on the three trials of a total of twenty “Asian” men at Leeds County Court, allowing the media to inform the public that the men were sentenced to a total of 221 years in prison for the rapes of fifteen young girls in the West Yorkshire town of Huddersfield. It was the second of these trials that Tommy Robinson was reporting about online on May 25 when he was arrested outside the Leeds courthouse, rushed through a brief trial conducted by Judge Geoffrey Marson, sentenced to thirteen months behind bars, and immediately confined in Hull Prison.

On June 13, he was transferred to Onley Prison, which has a higher Muslim population than the institution in Leeds and was thus more dangerous; exactly who ordered this transfer, which seems utterly unjustified except as a malicious attempt to expose Robinson to harm, remains unknown. Through the summer, Tommy's supporters held rallies around Britain, accusing their nation's establishment of having illegitimately imprisoned Tommy in order to shut down a major critic of the official appeasement of Islam; meanwhile, the mainstream media and political and cultural elite insisted in unison that Tommy's trial had been completely on the up-and-up and that he'd gotten precisely what he deserved.

That line of argument, however, was completely discredited on August 1, when Lord Burnett, the Lord Chief Justice of England and Wales, and two other judges issued a ruling that could scarcely have been more severe in its knockdown of Marson's treatment of Tommy. Writing that the whole thing had been a “muddle,” from the nature of the charges to the justification for the verdict, the judges reversed Tommy's conviction, freed him on bail, and ordered a new hearing. That hearing is scheduled for tomorrow, October 23.

Did Lord Burnett's decision chasten Tommy's critics? Not a chance. On Friday, once the reporting restrictions were lifted on those grooming trials, the major media in Britain dutifully provided accounts of the verdicts. There was certainly a lot to report: three trials, several months, fifteen victims, twenty defendants, a mountain of stomach-turning testimony. But the focus of the British media wasn't on any of this – it was on Tommy. Since he'd played a leading role in drawing attention to the existence of Muslim rape gangs in Britain – a fact that local governments, police departments, social-services agencies, and the mainstream media had kept shamefully, pusillanimously silent about for decades – they might have taken the occasion to apologize for having hounded him so cruelly and to thank him for the courage he'd exhibited and they hadn't. Instead, they stayed true to form.

In the Guardian, Josh Halliday dwelt on the rulings of Judge Marson. “It was during the second trial in May when the case was jeopardised by the actions of Tommy Robinson, the founder of the English Defence League,” wrote Halliday. “Within five hours of recording the video, Robinson was summoned before the judge, Geoffrey Marson QC, and summarily sentenced to 13 months imprisonment for contempt of court.....Jailing him after the Leeds video, Judge Marson told him his actions could have caused the trial to be re-run, costing 'hundreds and hundreds of thousands of pounds.'” Halliday accorded only the briefest and most elliptical of mentions to the sensational August 1 ruling by Lord Burnett and colleagues: “Robinson...was released from HMP Onley in Rugby on 1 August after successfully challenging the Leeds contempt of court ruling.” There was nothing whatsoever in Halliday's article to indicate that Marson's statements, which Halliday quoted as if they were gospel, had in fact been completely discredited by Lord Burnett's higher court.

In good British-media fashion, Halliday also took care to note that some of the supporters who showed up outside the Old Bailey at the time of Tommy's previous court appearance had carried flags of “the far-right group Generation Identity.” Anyone watching a video of that gathering could tell you that any Generation Identity flags were vastly outnumbered by Union Jacks.

In the Daily Mail, Tim Stickings read from the same song sheet as Halliday, citing at length, again as if it were gospel, the B.S. served up by Marson in defense of his kangaroo trial. Tommy, Stickings contended, had “jeopardiz[ed]” the rape trial “with an illegal Facebook video.” Stickings's reference to Tommy's August 1 release took this form: “He was jailed and later released on a technicality....The Lord Chief Justice, Lord Burnett, said the judge at Leeds Crown Court was wrong to deal with Robinson as quickly as he did.” One cannot easily conceive of a more outrageously dishonest way to refer to Lord Burnett's ruling, which, again, comprehensively shredded Marson's conduct of the May proceedings.

Stickings was also careful to remind readers that “Robinson is a convicted fraudster who has also served time for assault and drugs offences.” Tommy has written in his autobiography about the Orwellian way in which British authorities scoured his finances in search of something, anything, however minor, for which they could prosecute him. In addition, Stickings referred to Tommy's courageous public activities not as activism or journalism but, dismissively, as “antics.”

In the Independent, Lizzie Dearden toed the same line. She, too, quoted Marson as if his ruling hadn't been nullified. She, too, maintained that the grooming trials “were almost derailed by Tommy Robinson.” She also spent several paragraphs asserting that the rape gangs had had nothing to do with religion or cultural background.

Reports in other British media followed the same formula. It was as if they'd all been dictated, word for word, from on high. Rarely have the words “fake news” been more apropos.

“Is this a new low or what?” I wrote on Saturday in an e-mail to a British contact. “Yes,” she replied, “I do think this is a new low. They are all reporting on the Leeds trial even though it was thrown out, as if the findings there can be relied upon. All one needs to do is to repeat things often enough and people will believe them.”

My contact, who has carefully studied the May 25 broadcast that landed Tommy behind bars, also pointed out that, just over five minutes into that livestream, Tommy asks his camera operator “Should we stay live?” and then asks a nearby police officer where he can stand while broadcasting. Hence, contrary to the media's party line, “the police knew he was not only recording, but live recording, and let him carry on for another 70 minutes before arresting him. So, if he was jeopardising the trial, why didn’t they stop him earlier?” Good question. Indeed, or at least so it seems to me, dispositive.

In a Saturday YouTube video, Tommy commented on the reports by Halliday, Stickings, Dearden, and others, noting that while the British government's severe restrictions on courtroom reporting are supposedly meant to ensure a fair trial (even though such rules are virtually unheard of in the U.S. and most other Western countries), the real effect of these edicts is to reduce coverage of grooming-gang trials to a single news cycle – and the impact of that, in turn, is to minimize public awareness of and outrage over what cannot be described as anything other than an Islamic rape epidemic. (Just imagine if there had been a news blackout on, say the O.J. Simpson murder trial, with news media prohibited from printing or speaking a word about it until the day the verdict came in.)

The mainstream British news media may sometimes chafe at these reporting restrictions, but they don't protest too much, because, their politics being what they are, they don't really want to dwell on the topic of Muslim rape. God forbid that these trials might serve as an educational tool, finally opening British eyes, all these years after 9/11, to the dark reality of Islam's teachings about the sexual rights of male believers, the punishment for female immodesty, and the proper social position of infidels.

Responding in his YouTube video to the universal charge that he had jeopardized the trial, Tommy quoted court documents that explicitly state the contrary. “What I said [in the May 25 online video report] was already in the public domain,” Tommy stated, making a point that's been well established ever since his arrest, but that the British media have brazenly chosen to lie about. Tommy also had a few choice words for Lizzie Dearden, the above-mentioned Independent hack who flatly denies the Islamic roots of the grooming gangs. “In the court transcripts for my trial,” he noted, “Lizzie Dearden...is named as breaching two reporting restrictions for the same case the same weekend.” But she got away with it, while he didn't – for reasons that need hardly be spelled out.

Photo by Kristoffer Trolle

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