Britain First's Paul Golding and Jayda Fransen jailed for religiously-aggravated harassment
The leader and deputy leader of far-right group Britain First have been jailed.
Paul Golding, 36, and Jayda Fransen, 32, both of Penge, south-east London, were found guilty of launching a ‘political campaign’ which branded Muslims paedophiles and rapists.
Judge Justin Barron convicted Fransen of three charges and Golding of one charge of religiously-aggravated harassment.
Sentencing Fransen to 36 weeks and Golding for 18 weeks in jail, he said the crimes were ‘deliberately planned against targeted victims’.
The pair were arrested on May 10 last year in an investigation into the distribution of leaflets and online videos during an on-going trial, involving three men and a teen who raped a 16-year-old girl, at Canterbury Crown Court.
The case descended into chaos as Judge Barron attempted to continue his sentence and impose restraining orders so the pair could not contact victims and witnesses in the case.
Fransen spoke over Judge Barron and said: ‘This is a very sad day for British justice. Everything I did was for the children of this country and they are worth it.’
This caused cheers and applause to erupt from the public gallery as the pair were led away and Judge Barron temporarily left the courtroom before concluding his directions.
As supporters left the courtroom they hurled abuse at court staff and members of the press, branding the proceedings a ‘shambles’ and shouting: ‘No surrender’.
In delivering his judgment, Judge Justin Barron told the court Fransen and Golding were ‘well-known’, ‘controversial’ and ‘generate their own publicity’.
He said the court received a number of emails in support and against the pair.
But he said his verdict was based ‘solely on admissible evidence heard in court’.