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Britain First deputy leader, Jayda Fransen, fined for abusing Muslim woman

Britain First deputy leader, Jayda Fransen, fined for abusing Muslim woman

Categories: Latest News

Monday November 07 2016

The GuardianMetro and BBC News all report on the sentencing of the deputy leader of far right group Britain First, Jayda Fransen, after being found guilty of religiously aggravated harassment following an outburst against a Muslim woman, in front of her four young children, at the group’s ‘Christian patrol’ in Bury Park, Luton on 23 January.

Fransen, 30, was charged earlier this year after she was filmed abusing the Muslim woman as the far right group handed out pamphlets titled ‘World War Three has begun – Islam against the world’ in the densely populated Muslim area of Bury Park. Fransen was also charged with wearing a political uniform.

Britain First leader, Paul Golding, was fined for the same offence in July 2016. Luton magistrates court fined the far right leader £450 for wearing a ‘political uniform’ – an offence under the Public Order Act 1936, originally passed to curb the activities of Sir Oswald Mosley’s British Union of Fascists.

Luton and South Bedfordshire Magistrates’ court heard Fransen had approached Sumayyah Sharpe after Ms Sharpe refused a Britain First leaflet. Sharpe told the court: “She came across, shouting at me, saying, ‘Why are you covered?’ and she said that quite a few times. I told her it was my choice that I cover.”

Fransen went on to say Muslim women were forced to cover because Muslim men “cannot control their sexual urges”, adding “That’s why they are coming into my country, raping women across the continent.”

Ms Sharpe told the court she had to go home and “explain the meaning of the word rape to her young children” following the encounter. She also told the court her four year old son was now scared to leave the house in case they ran into the far right group again.

Footage from the ‘Christian patrol’ was uploaded onto the far right group’s YouTube channel after editing. The version available online led to Ms Sharpe being “branded a terrorist on some websites”.

Fransen admitted uttering the words but denied they were intended to be “offensive”.

But District judge Carolyn Mellanby, sentencing Fransen, said “I have no doubt the words used towards her [Sharpe], in her expression, represented everything against her and what she believes in.”

“In other words, offensive, insulting, abusive and, in my judgment, intended to cause offence and alarm and distress to her religion.”

Fransen was fined £1,000 for the religiously aggravated harassment and £200 for wearing a political uniform.

She was also ordered to pay £620 in costs, a £100 surcharge, and issued with a two-year restraining order preventing her from contacting Sharpe or engaging in intimidating behaviour towards her.

Fransen reacted to the court’s judgment saying it was “absolutely absurd” adding: “It was just a really clear display of Islamic appeasement. That’s all that we’ve just seen.”


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