Tu ne cede malis, sed contra audentior ito

Tuesday, 7 December 2010

How Griffin queered the pitch for the BNP

The article below, from the Times, describes how Nick Griffin destroyed the British National Party's electoral prospects, four weeks before the 2010 general election, by running to the enemy media with a cock-and-bull story about a murder plot against him and fellow shyster, Jim Dowson. Was there a falling out within the party's top leadership over the division of spoils? We shall probably have to wait just a very little longer now, to see whether honest men come into their own.

The Times, April 5, 2010

BNP’s head of publicity arrested for threatening to kill Nick Griffin

Nick Griffin, the leader of the British National Party, has told police that a senior colleague threatened to kill him after an investigation into a political “conspiracy”.

Mark Collett, the BNP’s head of publicity, has been arrested and suspended from the party after the discovery of an alleged plot by a “small clique” of officials to overthrow its leadership.

Mr Collett, 29, was in charge of the party’s election campaign literature and BNP newspaper, with a budget of tens of thousands of pounds. He and Mr Griffin had been close political colleagues and were both charged with race-hate offences after the broadcast of secret footage of a party meeting in Leeds in 2004. They were both found not guilty of all charges.

Details of the alleged plot against Mr Griffin, an MEP, were disclosed in an e-mail sent from the BNP’s headquarters last Wednesday. The organisers’ bulletin said that the party was also aware of threats to the safety of James Dowson, the BNP’s senior management and fundraising consultant.

The memo to party activists said: “Mark Collett was conspiring with a small clique of other party officials to launch a ‘palace coup’ against our twice democratically elected party leader.” It added: “We believe we have uncovered the most serious and dangerous threat to this party and its officers that we have ever witnessed.”

Mr Collett was seen as a potential leader of the BNP and had been selected to stand against David Blunkett, a former Home Secretary, at the general election.

The BNP memo said that the party’s internal security team had been carrying out a long-running investigation into “alleged financial irregularities and ‘scamming’” over printing materials. The investigation had also covered the leaking of sensitive information, an apparent reference to its membership list, and a “catalogue of recurring and seemingly inexplicable ‘gaffes’ being made in the general election campaign”.

Eddy Butler, the BNP’s national organiser and national elections officer, has recently left his position. Mr Butler, who had been selected as the prospective parliamentary candidate for Harlow, Essex, could not be contacted for comment.

Emma Colgate, who stood down on Friday as the staff manager for the BNP’s two MEPs, said that she was concentrating on fighting for her local parliamentary seat and denied suggestions that she was part of the alleged conspiracy. Ms Colgate, a BNP councillor in Thurrock, Essex, said: “There is always going to be gossip and conspiracy in all parties. This is not ideal timing, but sometimes you can’t control these things.”

The BNP is holding an urgent briefing for regional organisers and key officials this morning. The party has allegedly faced a resurgence of political infighting recently over Mr Griffin’s controversial appearance on the BBC One Question Time programme and the amendment of its constitution to comply with race discrimination laws.

A Humberside Police spokeswoman said that a 29-year-old man had been arrested on Thursday for making threats to kill and had been released on police bail after being interviewed.

Mr Griffin, 51, had made the complaint against Mr Collett to Dyfed Powys Police, his local force, who referred the case to Humberside Police, where the alleged offence occurred.

A BNP spokesman said: “Mark Collett’s membership of the British National Party has been suspended pending a disciplinary tribunal.”

A spokesman for Searchlight, the anti-fascist organisation, said: “Nick Griffin is constantly claiming he is the leader of a moderate, non-violent organisation. It is difficult to see how he can square that assertion with his statement to the police that his own head of publicity has been plotting to kill him.”


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