BNP leader in court on race hate charges

BRITISH National Party leader Nick Griffin was due to appear in court today charged with four race hate offences.Griffin, 45, was arrested at his home in mid-Wales last December by West Yorkshire Police as part of a long-running investigation into the BBC programme The Secret Agent.

BRITISH National Party leader Nick Griffin was due to appear in court today charged with four race hate offences.

Griffin, 45, was arrested at his home in mid-Wales last December by West Yorkshire Police as part of a long-running investigation into the BBC programme The Secret Agent.

As reported yesterday on The Evening Star website, he has now been charged with four offences of using words or behaviour intended or likely to stir up racial hatred in connection with the documentary, screened in July last year, which featured undercover filming of BNP activists.

The party's founding chairman, John Tyndall, was also charged with two counts of the same offence today.

Tyndall, 70, of Brighton, was arrested in December last year following a speech he made in Burnley in March 2004 which was shown in the documentary.

Griffin, a Cambridge graduate who grew up in Huntingfield, near Halesworth, will appear before Leeds Magistrates' Court today.

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He made the victory sign to more than 250 supporters, draped in Union and St George's flags, who had gathered outside Halifax police station yesterday as he answered his bail.

He told them he had been charged for telling the truth and would use his trial as a platform for defending the party's beliefs.

He said: "We have been told within the Crown Prosecution Service that this is a New Labour scam to win back the Muslim vote and it's likely to be dropped after the General Election.

"Whether I am found guilty will depend on the jury and whether someone should be jailed for telling the truth."

Griffin told reporters he had no regrets and would continue to tell the truth even if he had to go to jail.

He then led a rendition of Jerusalem followed by the Lord's Prayer before leaving the demonstration in a people carrier.

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