Journalists in the United Kingdom have successfully challenged the reporting ban issued by a judge in the Tommy Robinson case.
Lizzie Deardon of the Independent wrote to the judge asking for the ban to be lifted and representatives from Leeds Live News made oral argumentS on Tuesday.
“I wrote to the judge asking for the order to be lifted and he said representatives of the press also made oral submissions in Leeds today,” Dearden, a Home Affairs Correspondent for the Independent, tweeted. “So to everyone accusing the ‘MSM’ of being part of some dark conspiracy, just remember that we’re the only reason reporting this is now legal.”
— Will Chamberlain (@willchamberlain) May 29, 2018
Robinson, a 35-year-old independent journalist and activist was arrested on Friday for suspicion of breaching the peace for his reporting and is now serving a 13 month sentence for contempt of court, as he already had a suspended sentence for a similar offense. He was arrested, charged and sentenced within five hours.
The judge also issued a reporting restriction, barring the press from covering Robinson’s case or imprisonment. Articles from the Daily Record, Birmingham Live, The Mirror, and even Breitbart News were all taken offline in the hours following his detention due to the order.
The arrest was over his livestreaming outside the trial of a child grooming gang. That trial is currently under a temporary reporting ban over concerns that the defense could successfully argue that the jury was tainted if there is public outrage over the details. That reporting restriction remains in place.
Robinson’s lawyer, Matthew Harding, told Leeds Live that his client was “mindful, having spoken to others and taken advice, not to say things that he thought would actually prejudice these proceedings.”
“Mr Harding said Robinson had been the victim of assaults while serving time in prison before and there had been ‘a price on his head’ during his last prison term with inmates being offered the reward of drugs and mobile phones to kill him,” Leeds Live reports.
Harding made this case during the hearing, but the judge stated that “people have to understand that if they breach court orders there will be very real consequences.”
Robinson is a husband and father of three.
German conservative MP Petr Bystron announced on Sunday that he is offering the political prisoner asylum.
“Freedom of speech is under attack all across Europe. I was at the AfD march in Berlin today, where people were waving #FreeTommy signs. I grew up under Communist dictatorship, and I will not let our freedoms be taken away again,” Bystron told The Gateway Pundit.
On Saturday, one day after Robinson’s imprisonment, hundreds of supporters flooded Downing St. to demand his freedom.
Incredible scene on Downing Street right now as protestors gather in solidarity for jailed journalist Tommy Robinson, who was arrested for merely covering a story.
— The Columbia Bugle 🇺🇸 (@ColumbiaBugle) May 26, 2018