Shameless Nick Griffin intended to capitalise on a leading Conservative industrialist’s distinguished war record until an arrest put paid to his plans.
Michael Smith, son of Sir Alan Smith, was due to stand for the British National Party against Gordon Brown at the general election until he was charged with killing two cormorants with a shotgun on the banks of the River Tay in Perthshire in January.
The 62-year-old denies the charge and claims his human rights were breached when he was cautioned and interviewed by police without being given the chance to speak to a lawyer. Although this has been normal procedure in Scotland, the UK Supreme Court recently upheld an appeal by a teenager whose assault conviction was based on evidence gained before he spoke to his solicitor, ruling that this breached human rights law.
Sir Alan, a former RAF pilot, 92, fought alongside Douglas Bader and was awarded the Distinguished Flying Cross for “valour, courage or devotion to duty”. He was furious when his son, a lifelong Tory, defected to the BNP in 2006 and announced his plan to contest Brown’s Kirkcaldy and Cowdenbeath seat.
Smith, who owns a farm in Kinross, claimed he had become disillusioned with the Conservatives’ move away from the right and said he would fight an anti-immigration campaign. Griffin welcomed him and said the party would capitalise on his father’s war record during the election. Smith’s arrest ended their plans.
Hope not hate