November 29, 2008

BNP Threatens Free Media

Indymedia is yet again facing legal threats to prevent the free flow of communication, this time from a political movement known for its hostility to free speech. On the 21st November 08 Indymedia UK received an email from someone claiming to be a legal representative for the British National Party, threatening to take legal action on a number of counts for publishing information on BNP members.

After the hilarity of the “little Fuhrer”, Nick Griffin, running to the safety of the Human Rights Act to try to prevent the publication of members’ details, Britain’s fascist party has resorted to threats.

The letter sent to Indymedia by Lee John Barnes LLB (hons), from the “BNP Legal Affairs Unit”, threatens to take legal action, on the basis of theft, data protection and contempt of court, unless the list of members is removed.

The “lawyer” also attempts to shoehorn his charges into the form of anti-terrorism legislation, “The use of this information we feel is being hosted on your site for use only to incite acts of harassment, incite violence and direct targeted attacks against our members in the Leeds area”. He then goes on to explain the sections of the Terrorism Act under which Indymedia would be charged.

Indymedia rejects any accusation that the information could be used to incite violence and has strived to remove any comments that may be seen as incitement. One volunteer explains that there are many legitimate uses for the information, “for individuals to be able to check that their doctor, teacher, nurse etc. isn't a member of the BNP, for example”.

Indeed, Merseyside Police has already used the information in such a way to dismiss an officer, PC Steve Bettley, who has been exposed as a member. A spokesperson for the police said: “Chief Constable Bernard Hogan-Howe has reiterated our position that membership of the British National Party is totally incompatible with the duties and values of Merseyside Police”.

Most incredibly Mr Barnes then explains, “I will also be issuing a request to our internal investigations team to initiate actions to collect your home addresses, contact details and financial details relating to you personally as persons running or hosting the Indymedia website”. Internal Investigations? Once the BNP has this information, it “will be used to initiate legal actions upon yourselves, to initiate financial sanctions against your company and also will be publicised on various websites so that people may contact you and address any legal issues they may have”. Pot, kettle, black?

Indymedia’s legal volunteers have been somewhat baffled by Mr Barnes’s email. One volunteer explains, "the BNP has been terrified by the fact that its members are being outed. You might expect these mouthy nationalists to wear their membership with pride, but this email exposes the BNP yet again as a bunch of cowardly thugs, utterly incoherent and amateurish."

Indeed, it seems to Indymedia that the BNP’s “Legal Affairs Unit” is about as impressive on law as its Policy Unit is on policy. Mr Barnes – now Director of the unit – proudly displays his incompetence in noting that the list of ALL members in the country leaves room for concern only for “our members in the Leeds area”.

The references to the Terrorism Act were described by Indymedia Legal as “plain stoooopid”, and it is doubtful that any qualified legal practitioner would make such claims. The threat may have joined the growing list of worrying misapplications of the Terrorism Act had it not been so laughable.

Mr Barnes’s threat to post personal information about Indymedia participants may in itself be illegal – it certainly would cause a registered legal practitioner to lose his credentials. Perhaps then, it comes as no surprise that the Law Society confirms that Barnes is NOT a qualified lawyer at all.

In fact, Mr Lee John Barnes LLB (hons) is an incoherent, buffoonish windbag who could well be charged with incitement himself.

Believe it or not, Mr Barnes lists his favourite music as Morrisey, Sinatra, Manic Street Preachers, Public Enemy and the Sex Pistols! But then fascists have always tended to like self-flagellation (for those of you unfamiliar, the bands range from the left to the far left).

If that weren’t enough, Mr Barnes’s mysticism should impress. In Mr Barnes’s fantasy world, he hails from “The Barnes Clan”, which “are of the Bjeorn bloodline - Bjorn meaning bear was changed to Barnes - and this is the surname of those that were once the Berserkers - the bodyguards of Norse kings and the fiercest men in battle”. Yes, indeed.

Such is Mr Barnes’s buffoonery, there are now whole web sites dedicated to “all things that are John Lee Barnes LLB (hons)” and to particular instances of his many gaffes.

More sinister material can be found elsewhere. Particularly disturbing is Barnes’s claim that, “This is not a game we are playing, this is a war and in times of war unquestionable obedience and loyalty to the commander in the field must come first, The 'First Law Of Nationalism' is - If you work with the enemy, then you are the enemy.”

See also

imc uk legal


Hillboy said...

Talking of BNP lies, the most sickening neo-nazi propaganda has been published on the Evening Standard comments section, the bnp taking advantage of the Mumbai bombings, especially hearing there have been British casualties.

The usual bad-spelling BNP trolls are in existance, including a "pretend Muslim" who as expected expouses Anti-Muslim and anti-immigrant views, while being unable to spell iman properly.

The rabble-rousing tabloid press have done their utmost to foster hatred and division, giving the neo-fascists the fuel in which to attack Muslims.

The fascist comments on this comments section at the Evening Standard posted by Scumfronters who more than likely were responding to "emergency trolling alerts" by logging onto the Internet and posting racist bullshit.

Some of the most hypocritical hardcore racist remarks on this putrid Evening Standard blog described the murders in Mumbai as being "worse than the Nazis".

Bad though the attacks are, over six million people in India were not deliberately persecuted over a long period of time, then tortured and killed in concentration camps like the Holocaust. If anything, it's the disaffected Muslims in India who were the persecuted ones during and since the Hindu extremist riots in 2003, when the police stood by, and allowed men, women and children to be raped and murdered.

Because most Muslims have a dark skin, and many live in dangerous and unstable, non-democratic countries, Herr Griffin has made Islam and Muslims Public Enemy Number One.

It's just a damn shame that Islamophobia is deep rooted in the tabloid press, which is all the more reason that Indymedia must be protected from being scared into keeping quiet by such learned legal experts as Lee Barnes. If Mr Barnes is the only threat that Indymedia have recieved, I'd delete the e-mail as the worthless hyperbowl spam it is.

psycho surgeon said...


GDP said...

Indymedia should not fear this mentally ill amateur. Barnes poses very little threat to anyone but his own mental health.

If the BNP are indeed state-funded, this clown was put there with the approval of Gri££in to fuck up the party's image beyond the point of sanity, to help the party collapse once Cyclops pisses off to Europe.

Anonymous said...

Can someone give Lee Barnes an enema?


Anonymous said...

Please Ketlan, can you add the picture of gagged BNP members from outside Burnley Town Hall to illustrate the party's hyprocisy when it comes to free speech.

Double-standards is the basis of the BNP's warped definition of free speech.

Anonymous said...

I think this is now a police matter.

Barnes is not a solicitor, it is dubious wether he has any qualifications.

It is an offence to pass your self off as a qualified solicitor when you are not. It is an offence to maintain that you have a degree when you have not.

Time for Inspector Knacker to charge this fraud.

The rest of his rant may be ignored.

Old Sailor

ex member said...

Don't know about Berserkers. Lee Barnes has gone absolutely beserk, and is a liability to everyone concened with nationalism.

Has someone forgot to point out to Loony Lee Barnes LLB that his beloved Cyclops himself had relesed the data?????????????????

Anonymous said...

Is it true only 25 bnp turned out in Liverpool?

Anonymous said...

Looks like Nick Griffin's pulled a few strings in the establishment. The BNP are state, which is why the always escape justice so frequently.

For BNP read MI5

Anonymous said...

The fact that they use this quality of "lawyer" is probably the reason why they have not had any success with legal actions such as against the police for the "wrongful arrests" of the racism cuts both ways leaflet warriors

Anonymous said...

I've never been a member of the BNP but my name was on the leaked list.
Today I received another begging letter from the BNP and my details are the same as what was on the leaked list so I'm thinking its been the mailing list that was leaked.

Antifascist said...

'Please Ketlan, can you add the picture of gagged BNP members from outside Burnley Town Hall to illustrate the party's hyprocisy when it comes to free speech.'

Good idea. I'll dig it out and post it.

'Is it true only 25 bnp turned out in Liverpool?'

Be fair. One estimate was as high as thirty.

Anonymous said...

I hope that Barnes did send the letter to Mersyside Police exactly as it appears on his blog...

"The use of this list in any internal police 'withchunts' as per seeking the identity of any officers...."

What is a 'Chunt' and what have they been put with?
PMSL..... Keep up the good work Barnsey, laff a minute with you around!

Anonymous said...

I see the BNP are making much of the fact that Michael Smith, son of an ex Tory something or another, is going to "switch sides" to the BNP. I see Mr Smith is distressed that his son is changing sides - him and Mr Kemp (see Stephan Kemp's, son of Arthur, comments on this blog) now have something in common except at 16 Stephan is more politically astute than poor Michael! Given his level of political acumen, Michale Smith should fit right in with the BNP - maybe Mr Kemp can help with his "education".

Ex BNP fundholder said...

Lee Barnes is a benefit scrounging mentally disturbed c*nt.

I was once a member of the BNP and had the misfortune to encounter this idiot at a BNP meeting. Even though he isnt a member and never has been. It was because of his deranged rantings that I quit. He claimed that everything was the fault of the "bourgeiose". The "middle classes" were decadent and anyone with more braincells and a better education and a proper income from hard work than him (which must be about 95% of the population) was to blame for the country's problems. Hang on I thought, this is supposed to be BNP not the frigging Communist Party. The man is dangerous to himself and the BBC put him on Radio 4 to heap embarrasment on Griffin's dodgy party.

Anonymous said...

I just wish someone in the Legal Establishment in this country would get on and tackle Barnes head on, or his local Mental Health team would up his medication.

I just wonder if he realises how empty his threats are against organisations such as indymedia, etc when there are now 1000s of copies of the bnp membership list in the hands of individuals. Just how is Barnes going to sue that little lot?