Teen Wins Libel Case Towards Tommy Robinson, U.Okay. Far-Proper Activist

2021-07-22 19:06:57

LONDON — Tommy Robinson, a British far-right activist, misplaced a libel case on Thursday filed by a teenage refugee from Syria who had been filmed being attacked at his faculty, after Mr. Robinson falsely claimed the boy had himself violently attacked classmates.

Mr. Robinson will likely be required to pay 100,000 kilos in damages, round $137,000, based on the judgment handed down by Justice Matthew Nicklin throughout a distant session in London’s Excessive Courtroom. He additionally ordered Mr. Robinson to pay {the teenager}’s authorized prices, that are prone to be bigger than the damages.

Mr. Robinson, 38, whose actual identify is Stephen Yaxley-Lennon, was the founding father of the English Protection League, a nationalist group identified for its anti-Islam and anti-immigration stance and for violent avenue protests. Regardless of being seen as on the fringes of British life, he has additionally turn out to be a distinguished determine internationally for supporters of comparable ideologies, with hyperlinks to the far proper in Europe, america and elsewhere.

{The teenager}, Jamal Hijazi, now 17, was filmed being attacked at his faculty in northern England in October 2018, and after the video unfold on-line, Mr. Robinson claimed in two movies posted on his Fb web page that {the teenager} was “not harmless and he violently assaults younger English ladies in his faculty.”

In one of many clips, Mr. Robinson had mentioned that {the teenager} “beat a lady black and blue” and “threatened to stab” a boy at his faculty, which Mr. Hijazi denied. His two posts in regards to the video have been collectively considered greater than 1,000,000 occasions, based on court docket paperwork.

Mr. Robinson represented himself on the trial, arguing that his feedback have been substantively true. However the court docket decided on Thursday that Mr. Robinson’s proof “fell woefully brief” of proving any of his allegations.

Mr. Hijazi got here to Britain along with his household in 2016 as refugees from town of Homs in Syria, based on court docket paperwork. His legal professionals argued that the posts by Mr. Robinson had a devastating impression on {the teenager} and had led to demise threats.

In his choice, Justice Nicklin reaffirmed that concept, noting that Mr. Hijazi “grew to become the goal of abuse which finally led to him and his household having to depart their residence, and the claimant to should abandon his schooling.” The decide decided that Mr. Robinson’s posts have been “calculated to inflame the scenario,” after the preliminary video of the assault on Mr. Hijazi grew to become a spotlight of public dialogue in Britain.

Scars from what Mr. Robinson had carried out, and significantly its results on Mr. Hijazi’s schooling, have been prone to final “for a few years, if not a lifetime,” the decide added.

Reacting to the choice, Francesca Flood, one of many legal professionals representing Mr. Hijazi, mentioned that the agency was “delighted that Jamal has been totally vindicated.”

“Jamal and his household now want to put this matter behind them so that they will get on with their lives,” she mentioned in an announcement. “They do, nevertheless, want to prolong their gratitude to the nice British public for his or her assist and generosity, with out which this authorized motion wouldn’t have been doable.”

The court docket additionally granted an injunction in opposition to Mr. Robinson ordering him to not publish or publish comparable allegations in opposition to Mr. Hijazi. The decide mentioned that primarily based on statements Mr. Robinson had made in court docket, the activist meant to “repeat a big a part of the proof that has been heard on this trial and the allegations” made in opposition to {the teenager}.

After the choice was handed down, Mr. Robinson informed the decide that his personal monetary struggles would make it inconceivable to pay the required court docket prices, or in all probability the damages.

“The price is surprising,” he mentioned. “The opposite level is, I don’t have any cash, I’m bankrupt. I’ve struggled massively with my very own points these previous 12 months.”

Mr. Robinson additionally mentioned that he had lately made a movie with an American broadcaster that revisited the incident and requested whether or not the injunction would have an effect on that, to which the decide mentioned he was not there to supply recommendation on the legality of the movie.

Mr. Robinson is not any stranger to England’s authorized system. He has a number of previous prison convictions, together with for violence, public order offenses, disobeying court docket orders and fraud. In 2019, he was discovered responsible of contempt of court docket and jailed after filming outdoors a court docket in Leeds which had a information media blackout.

He has served 4 stints in jail and has been banned from Twitter, Instagram and Fb for breaching the social media platforms’ tips.

Fb, in a 2019 weblog publish, defined that it had eliminated his accounts after posts that “violate our insurance policies round organized hate.”

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Supply by [earlynews24.com]