A lawyer who engaged in a Twitter spat with Tommy Robinson has resigned from his firm within days after alleged “harassment” reduced him to tears.
Ian Mcloone, a partner at Luton-based Taylor Walton LLP, took to Twitter last week to criticise ex-English Defence League leader Stephen Yaxley-Lennon, AKA ‘Tommy Robinson’, over negative comments he supposedly made about Luton.
In his post, Mr Mcloone mentioned that Tommy Robinson no longer lives in Luton and included the name of the settlement where he resides – already published by media during coverage of a court hearing earlier this year.
Mr Robinson quickly reacted and accused Mr Mcloone of publishing his ‘address’ and thereby endangering his children. He turned up twice at the lawyer’s Luton offices and once at Mr Mcloone’s home to confront him over the tweet.
These confrontations were filmed by Mr Robinson and posted on Youtube. Filmed while standing inside Taylor Walton’s office in Alma Street, an angry Mr Robinson says to Mcloone: “My children have been in a hotel the last four days because of you, are you aware there’s a threat against my life!
“At what point do you think it’s a good idea to put my children’s address online!”
Mr Robinson was arrested by police outside the offices on suspicion of harassment last Thursday and a High Court injunction was secured against him along with planned civil action, although these were dropped by Taylor Walton after Mr Mcloone’s resignation on Tuesday.
In an online statement, Mr Mcloone insisted he had not tweeted Robinson’s home address, only the name of the settlement. He claimed that after Mr Robinson’s videos appeared online, he and the firm had been targeted on social media by others.
After his resignation, he stated: “I hope that Mr Robinson will be able to draw a definitive line under our altercation and, crucially, allow all the staff and families of staff at Taylor Walton to continue with their personal and work committments without any threats to their safety.”
Meanwhile, Mr Robinson accused Mr Mcloone of having an obsession with him, with hostile tweets allegedly going back three years. He said: “Where my family live has nothing to do with Ian.
“I’ve had so many calls from builders to estate agents from Luton saying they won’t use Taylor Walton again because of how they handled this. They actually said they were going to sue me.
“I’m the victim in this, not them. You can clearly see from my videos of the incident I was in no way threatening violence.
“In fact I was telling them, ‘I’m not here for violence I’m here to talk’.”
A Bedfordshire Police spokesman added: “A 33-year-old man was arrested on Thursday, November 17, in Luton on suspicion of harassment. He has been bailed until December 19 pending further enquiries.”