Tommy Robinson jailed nine months for contempt of court

Luton-born activist Tommy Robinson has been jailed for nine months for contempt of court after nearly derailing a trial against a rape gang.

Thursday, 11th July 2019, 7:47 pm
Tommy Robinson

The English Defence League founder, 36, was convicted of the offence last week after filming defendants in a rape trial outside Leeds Crown Court on May 25 last year despite a reporting ban.

At the Old Bailey today, Robinson was told his actions had encouraged "vigilante action". Outside the court, his supporters booed as news of his sentence reached them.

During the trial in 2018, reporting restrictions had been put in place until the last of a series of linked trials had been decided by juries.

Tommy Robinson

Robinson's actions could have led the men involved in the case to walk free, as the defence quickly applied to discharge the jury following Robinson's breach. The judge ultimately dismissed this motion, and all of the men were convicted of offences including rape, sexual trafficking and supplying class a drugs to victims aged 11 to 17.

Robinson was initially jailed for 13 months last year for breaching the restriction, however he was freed in August after the Court of Appeal ruled that procedural failings had given rise to "unfairness".