A report by Hope Not Hate has revealed that in 2023, the alarming trend of far-right activists and sympathisers being convicted of terrorism offenses reached unprecedented levels, surpassing the already record-breaking figures of the previous year. This surge in convictions, totalling twenty-three individuals, encompassed a range of offenses, from sharing terror-related content online to actively encouraging acts of terrorism through platforms like podcasts.

One notable shift observed alongside the rise in convictions is the increasing age of those found guilty. While in 2022, the average age of convicted individuals stood at 29, it rose to 32 in the subsequent year. Additionally, a notable demographic change emerged, with three individuals over the age of 60 and another three over 40 among the convicted. Notably, the number of teenage offenders decreased from nine in 2022 to four in 2023.

Despite the absence of actual terrorist acts committed by those convicted, several were apprehended in the planning stages of such atrocities. For instance, former soldier William Howitt was intercepted while plotting to set fire to a left-wing bookstore in Nottingham. Similarly, Ben Styles was found in possession of a homemade sub-machine gun in his garage, while Charles Cannon faced charges for collecting bomb-making instructions and expressing enthusiasm for attacking asylum seekers.

Many of the convicted individuals were associated with or supported far-right organisations. Among them, Kristofer Kearney, a prominent figure in Patriotic Alternative, drew significant attention. Following a lengthy extradition process from Spain, Kearney pleaded guilty to disseminating extremist content on Telegram, advocating violence against Jews and Muslims.

Another notable case involved Ashley Podsiad-Sharp, a former prison officer associated with Patriotic Alternative, who received an eight-year prison sentence for possessing terrorist materials. Podsiad-Sharp had previously supported National Action before aligning himself with Patriotic Alternative.

Furthermore, several individuals with prior terrorist convictions, some on parole, were re-incarcerated for committing additional offenses. Harry Vaughan, previously given a suspended sentence despite admitting to multiple terrorism-related charges and possessing indecent images of children, was one such case. Vaughan’s lenient sentence in 2020 sparked controversy, particularly given his subsequent criminal behaviour.

The increase in far-right terrorism convictions coincided with a rise in Prevent referrals, reaching 6,817 by March 2023, with Extreme Right-Wing concerns surpassing Islamist concerns for the third consecutive year. The education sector accounted for a significant portion of referrals, with a concerning proportion involving young males, including minors.

Statistics from the Home Office indicated that as of June 2023, 27% of individuals in custody for terrorism-related offenses espoused Extreme Right-Wing ideologies, highlighting the persistent threat posed by this faction. The proliferation of extremist content online, coupled with the global nature of the neo-Nazi movement, has exacerbated the dissemination of terrorist propaganda and plots.

The increasingly toxic discourse surrounding immigration and Islam in political and media spheres has emboldened the British far right, contributing to a climate where terrorism is not only dreamt of but actively promoted and plotted by some individuals within these circles.

If you like our content, join us in helping to bring reality and decency back by SUBSCRIBING to our Youtube channel: https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCQ1Ll1ylCg8U19AhNl-NoTg AND SUPPORTING US where you can: Award Winning Independent Citizen Media Needs Your Help. PLEASE SUPPORT US FOR JUST £2 A MONTH https://dorseteye.com/donate/

To report this post you need to login first.
Previous articleMan sought following headbutting incident in Bournemouth
Next articleWeymouth public’s response leads to alleged assault perpetrators coming forward
Dorset Eye
Dorset Eye is an independent not for profit news website built to empower all people to have a voice. To be sustainable Dorset Eye needs your support. Please help us to deliver independent citizen news... by clicking the link below and contributing. Your support means everything for the future of Dorset Eye. Thank you.