This update concerns a new case against me, which first began with a request from Special Branch to attend an interview under caution exactly one year ago – which I refused – and for which I was then arrested outside Derby Crown Crown, January 10th.
[The Derby Crown Court hearing on that same day was adjourned, eventually resulting in my Appeal (for breach of the terms of my suspended prison sentence) being accepted, July 10th, when the complainant, the National Probation Service, failed to provide any evidence to the court. Two hours after this victory, I was informed by the same Special Branch detective, – who had originally wanted to interview me under caution last November, and who then arrested and interrogated me in Derby on January 10th, – that I was being charged with three new counts of allegedly causing offence during two Internet podcasts from May and July last year. (Following my interrogation last January, the same Special Branch officer saw no qualms in releasing me from custody too late to catch a train home, basically leaving me, a single woman, stranded in a strange town with no other option than to book a further night in a hotel.) Bail conditions included a ban from posting online. Last month, my bail conditions were finally varied, as discussed below.]
Following on from the January 10th arrest and interrogation, I was bailed-to-return the following month. Shortly before this deadline, the same SB officer informed me that my bail had been extended for a further 28 days. My February application to vary these conditions – probably unlawful under Article. 10 of the ECHR – was unsuccessful. The Derby magistrates’ bench did, however, urge the Crown to come to a quick charging decision, ensuring that the CPS standards were being properly upheld. To no avail: it took the Crown a further five months of consecutive 28-day bail extensions, – each arriving in my inbox shortly before the next deadline, – before the Crown then gave orders to Special Branch to press ahead with the new charges, immediately following my successful Appeal.
Every month, from January 10th until July 31st, I had a date looming, wondering if I should book a ticket. And every month, sometimes just a day or two before I was due to answer bail, an extension would be granted. Furthermore, during these five months, on May 22nd, I was raided by eight police officers, arrested and again interviewed by police, this time for allegedly harassing en chanson one of my more persistent accusers. Once again, police seized all my electronic devices. Six months on, despite no news of any charges in this second new case, police have still not returned my property.
I was formally charged with three new S. 127 communications offences, July 31st; forced to spend £80 on another return trip to Derby, during the first Covid Lockdown and during a heatwave, when a postal requisition would have done just as well. An original trial date was set for January 10th 2021, with the prospect of another six months of effectively being gagged – all for a song!
Early September, my solicitor, Kevin Lowry-Mullins applied for the case to be dismissed on grounds that the prosecution is out-of-time. After several video-link management hearings, yet more incompetence in the delivery of documents, as well as a shift of jurisdiction from Derby to London, – three adjournments later, my new case finally opened, Tuesday, November 17th; with Ben Maguire, prosecuting, in front of District Judge Michael Snow, back at my old haunt, Westminster Magistrates.
N.B. The previous adjournment of October 26th had been granted “as an indulgence” by the Chief Magistrate, in order to give the Crown enough time to find a “Special Counsel” to counter-argue my application to dismiss the new charges against me. Despite these extra five weeks, it became immediately apparent to both myself and my barrister, Adrian Davies, last month in court, that Mr Maguire had taken only the most cursory of glances at the 240-page initial prosecution papers (mostly comprised of the two radio interview transcripts and pages of police questions and my mostly “no comment” replies; along with an impressive array of witness statements from various police officers dotted around the country, tasked with trying to prove that the offending online posts were “sent” or were “caused to be sent” by yours truly).
Two journalists were present: a small, dark-haired woman, Japanese perhaps, whose report found its way on to the far-from-impartial Court News UK website (paywall), basically repeating the prosecution’s misleading claims about me, then citing the varied bail conditions; the second was a man wearing a full-face mask, with a pair of round glasses poking out under a crop of fairish, thick hair, who, I believe, might have been Matt Broomfield. It took a full week for the official court bail sheet to drop through my letter box. The conditions are not quite the same as the ones dictated by DJ Snow to both lawyers in court that day. My barrister’s note, received the day after the hearing, reads:
(i) no residence condition and (ii) a more circumscribed prohibition against posting on the internet, broadcasting or publishing in any form any reference at all to Judaism, the Jewish faith (if not synonymous with Judaism), Jewish people, the Holocaust, the Second World War, Israel, or any member of the Nazi party.
Below, the official bail sheet which arrived through my letter box last week. After receiving no fewer than three separate summonses for last month’s hearing, my suspicions are confirmed: the clerk must be in love! Either that or I am being trolled. The final condition is possibly an “anti-Semitic trope”, in-and-of itself. As for “[…]people” and “any member of the […] people”… Well, that pretty much covers anyone and everyone.
Jesu.. Oops! Nearly had the sirens blaring again there. My humble apologies if I caused any offence. I don’t know when to stop, apparently.
As another friend notes, the reason given by the court for the now-varied bail conditions is crazy, “…because by defining more offences for you they are increasing the probability of you committing offences whilst on bail.”
This is the plan, naturally. To have me locked up over Christmas, either before (preferably) or else on my unwell, elderly mother’s 77th birthday, enabling various “charitable” NGOs to gloat on their websites, whilst simultaneously touting for donations and more “volunteers”, aka snoopers.
Throughout almost this entire year, since January, I have been gagged, first by Special Branch, and now by an English court, seemingly once again at the behest of one such “charity”; I have been unable to publish any of my thoughts (or music) on my own website, about this ongoing persecution by the state of a musician, in my own home country, on behalf of a foreign-interest lobby group. Even now my bail conditions prevent open, honest, lawful discussion on an array of topics, as seen above.
Huge thanks to all those who have lent support, especially my long-suffering family, my legal team, Adrian Davies, Kevin Lowry-Mullins, my co-authors, Gerard Menuhin, Germain Gaiffe, and to those who have kept others up-to-date with articles and blogs and/or who have supported me in other ways. ❤
Next court date December 17th, 10 am, Westminster Magistrates Court, Marylebone, London.