Stoke BNP leader due in court on racial harassment charge
Reports have emerged over the weekend that, former city councillor and leader of Stoke-on-Trent British National Party (BNP), Michael Coleman is due to go on trial accused of causing racial harassment over a seven-month period.
It is understood that the charges relate to comments on his blog.
The blog contains racist and fascist ideology, especially his analysis of last year’s riots in a post titled “Are we all the same under the skin”, as we highlighted on our blog last October.
In this post Coleman sets the tone with his opening statement, in which he states his beliefs that there are “profound racial differences between the peoples of the world and that it is these differences that can explain how and why certain races behave, how they achieve things, or don’t achieve things.”
He goes on to add that the riots were caused by “the difference in personality, perception and values that exist between the darker races and ourselves… they can’t be changed by any of the lame social engineering ‘mind control’ darkie taming programmes that the red Socialists are implementing.”
Coleman, who along with 4 other BNP councillors, lost his seat on the City Council as the BNP were defeated in every contested ward in the elections last May. He appeared at North Staffordshire Magistrates’ Court in March on two charges of racially or religiously aggravated harassment, alarm or distress caused by words or writing in the period August 2011 to March 2012. He denied both charges and requested a crown court trial. The case will be committed to Stoke-on-Trent Crown Court on May 24th.
Members of Stoke SWP and NorSCARF headed to the Black Country at the weekend, to help out comrades in the local UAF and members of the local community to distribute leaflets urging the constituents of Dudley and Sandwell to use their vote on May 3rd against the fascist parties standing there. Dudley has four far-right candidates standing, two from the BNP and two from the National Front (NF). Sandwell has two candidates from the BNP and one from NF.
For information on other anti-fascist leafleting planned over the next few weeks, please visit the NorSCARF blog.