Right-wing commentator Tommy Robinson arrested for filming Islamic child grooming trial in UK
The right-wing firebrand was already on a suspended sentence for "contempt of court" over a gang rape case back in 2017
Scores of protestors descended on Whitehall following the arrest of far-right leader Tommy Robinson for allegedly "breaching the peace" after he filmed members of an Islamic child grooming gang entering a Leeds courthouse for trial.
On Saturday afternoon, the area had to be cordoned off as his supporters gathered outside Downing Street blocking the traffic, reported Fox News.
Robinson, whose real name is Stephen Yaxley-Lennon, was detained by law enforcement in Britain while he was filming a grooming trial in the West Yorkshire city on Friday morning, streaming the entire event in a Facebook Live video.
Tommy Robinson has been arrested in Leeds court for reporting on grooming gangs. More updates to follow pic.twitter.com/iEPDoNOKHM— Caolan Robertson (@CaolanRob) May 25, 2018
Tommy, who is the founder of the English Defence League, currently remains in custody. The details of his purported sentence are still unclear after the judge ordered the media and free press not to report on the case.
In the videos that surfaced during the demonstration, furious supporters of the vocal firebrand are seen singing Robinson's name. The footage also shows one man being lifted by the crowd atop the court gates before turning himself towards the crowd and pumping his fist amid chants of "shame on you" to police officers.
Several members of the crowd are seen holding “#FreeTommy” signs or waving flags including the Union Jack, the Ukip logo, and the St George’s Cross.
One of the protesters was seen carrying a "White Lives Matter" placard, while some of the others present had mild skirmishes with the authorities, according to the footage.
Subsequently, the protest moved on to the Parliament Square. However, Met Police reported that there had been no arrests during the demonstration.
In the video, Robinson is shown to be surrounded by as many as seven police officers as he live-streamed the whole affair on his phone. Right after his revelation, the police arrested him, citing the reason as "breach of the peace."
However, a reliable source with inside knowledge of the case claimed that he has been jailed for 13 months on a contempt-of-court charge, according to Fox News.
By Friday afternoon, a court listing showed that the said case was "closed".
That being said, one of the sources said Robinson, a longtime activist against Islam and Islamic migration, was jailed in Hull Prison. Upon a request for information by Fox News asking if he was there, the prison declined to comment. The Leeds Crown Court refused to respond to a request for comment.
The right-wing firebrand was already on a suspended sentence for "contempt of court" over a gang rape case back in 2017, according to The Independent.
On Friday, the judge presiding over the case issued a "reporting ban" on the case. This order entails banning of reporters from reporting on a case if the reportage could in any way "prejudice" a trial. Until the trial that Robinson was reporting on concluded, the order would disallow any form of reportage on the said trial.
As a result, news outlets in the United Kingdom have removed their reportage from their websites in order to comply with the court order. And so, most of the reporting in the UK talks about his arrest but not on his alleged sentencing.
There is an atmosphere of fear shrouding the UK. which almost looks like a police state. Some of the sources with inside knowledge about Robinson's case spoke on condition of anonymity as they fear they would be detained for contempt.
One of these sources, in a conversation with Fox News, said that according to Robinson's lawyer, a 13-month prison sentence was equivalent to a death sentence considering the number of Muslim gang members present in the prison circuit.
“Tommy’s lawyer said he will likely die in jail given his profile and previous credible threats, and the judge basically said he doesn’t care,” the source said. “He sentenced him to 13 months in prison.”
Right-wing commentators and politicians reacted rather fiercely over Robinson's sentencing. British authorities have jailed several right-wing personalities in the UK, especially those critical of Islam and the mass immigration of Muslim refugees into the United Kingdom.
“What kind of police state have we become?” tweeted UK Independence Party leader and European MP Gerard Batten.
I am hearing reports that Tommy Robinson has been arrested for ‘a breach of the peace’ while live-streaming a report on a grooming gang (sex slave) trial at Leeds Crown Court. Further reports say he has received a custodial sentence. What kind of Police state have we become?— Gerard Batten MEP (@GerardBattenMEP) May 25, 2018
“I am trying to recall a legal case where someone was convicted of a ‘crime’ which cannot be reported on,” he added. “Where he can be cast into prison without it being possible to report his name, offense, or place of imprisonment for fear of contempt of court.”
“Arrested for “breaching the peace” while reporting on an Islamic grooming gang trial?” Dutch MP Geert Wilders tweeted. “Is this Saudi-Arabia?” Wilders also submitted parliamentary questions to the Dutch minister of foreign affairs on the matter.
Roseanne Barr, the star of the ABC revival of the sitcom "Roseanne" in the United States, retweeted a number of messages in support of Robinson before voicing her own outrage at the situation.
Robinson is hailed in the UK for his outspoken critique of political correctness and the alarming influence of Islamic extremism that is growing every day, according to supporters. While his liberal opponents call him a "racist who stokes fear and division."
Furthermore, one anti-terror official even claimed that Robinson's incendiary material was partially responsible for the radicalization of a man who attacked a mosque last year.
Robinson made headlines when he upset Piers Morgan, a CNN host, in an appearance on "Good Morning Britain" by waving a Koran at his face and claiming it cites "murder and violence against us."
"Put that book down and show some damn respect for peoples' religious beliefs," Morgan said.
This is not the first time that right-wing conservative figures have been shut down by authorities in Britain. Back in March, Canadian right-wing activist Lauren Southern was told to leave the country shortly after she made a video in Luton by placing a stall declaring: "Allah is gay" as a social experiment to see what the reaction would be. Luton is an English town with a relatively high population of Muslims.
Again, in the same month, activists Martin Sellner and Brittany Pettibone of "Generation Identity" were denied entry into the UK after a judge concluded that their presence was also “not conducive to the public good.”
Blogger Pamela Geller and radio talk show host Michael Savage have also been barred from entering the country. Both are known to be vocal in their criticism of Islamic extremism.
What's more? Even President Trump has been targeted to be banned from the UK by several left-leaning politicians over his views on immigration. The president is scheduled to visit the country in July, where he would be met by heavy protests, according to critics.
In the meantime, over 340,000 people have signed a petition asking Prime Minister Theresa May to free Robinson.