Blair Cottrell Has Lost His Appeal

Sad news, my fellow Aussie patriots: Blair Cottrell has lost his appeal against his September 2017 conviction for serious religious vilification. To be precise: a charge of knowingly engage in conduct with the intention of inciting serious contempt for, or revulsion or severe ridicule of, another person or class of persons on the ground of religious belief or activity, contrary to section 25(2) of the Racial & Religious Tolerance Act.

See : Cottrell v Ross (PDF) | ‘Not surprised’: Right-wing activist’s appeal fails for beheading dummy, Caroline Schelle, The Age, December 19, 2019 | Blair Cottrell fails to overturn effigy beheading conviction, Tessa Akerman, The Australian, December 19, 2019 | Far-right extremist Blair Cottrell loses appeal against conviction for inciting contempt of Muslims, Michael McGowan and AAP, The Guardian, December 19, 2019 | The County Court’s decision sends a powerful message about religious intolerance, Victorian Equal Opportunity and Human Rights Commission, December 20, 2019.

Cottrell’s previous criminal record is detailed in a report by Geir O’Rourke and Angus Thompson in the Herald Sun (June 11, 2016). Of his offending, they write: ‘Cottrell, 26, was sentenced to four months in prison in May 2012 after being convicted of 13 charges, including seven counts of intentionally damaging property. County Court Judge Michael Tinney convicted the then-22-year-old of throwing a missile, stalking, failing to comply with a community-based order, and two counts of recklessly causing serious injury. In December 2013 he was fined $1000 and sentenced to seven days in jail by a County Court judge for aggravated burglary, property damage, arson, trafficking testosterone, possessing a controlled weapon and breaching court orders.’ Cottrell, as ‘Bruce’, appeared in a documentary about youth in the maximum-security Youth Unit at Port Phillip Prison in Truganina, in which he describes how he abused steroids, stalked his former partner and her boyfriend, tried to kill him, set fire to their house, and eventually got arrested, convicted, and sent to prison.

In this latest judgement, Judge Paul Kidd states (§ 334, 347, 351) that:

I reject, as lacking in all credibility, the appellant’s claim that this video was about the mere absurd, or intended to be humorous. It is a patently disingenuous characterisation, and is self-contradictory. I do not believe him.

I reject completely the many explanations advanced by the appellant that this was not directed to engendering extreme feelings about Muslims in general. His explanations smack of a manufactured post facto rationalisation and are lacking in credibility. I do not believe the appellant.

If this video were directed to the world at large I would have found the charge proved. That said, I find the nature of the target audience further reinforces the inference of intention. The appellant was aware that the material would be accessed by those who viewed the UPF Facebook page. His knowledge of who the target audience would be strengthens the inference that his intention was to incite a response from them. Those accessing the Facebook page may have been members of UPF, members of the UPF Facebook page or people who otherwise shared the opinions of the UPF or were interested in their ideas or the issues they discussed. Given the likelihood of shared views or interests, these people would be more likely to be stirred up by the content.

That Cottrell should have been found to have been disingenuous, self-contradictory, engaged in the manufacture of a post-facto rationalisation and lacking in credibility is unlikely to have generated much surprise in anybody who’s been following Cottrell’s political career since National Alternative helped him launch one back in April 2015 (or, for that matter, Aryan Nations in November 2015). His attitude to women and the media was most remarkably captured in the rape tweet — Cottrell: ‘I keed! I keed!’ — he sent to Sky News’ Laura Jayes although, alongside his criminal record, a previous declaration that manipulating women ‘using violence and terror’ is kosher may have been a warning sign. So too, his eagerness to execute traitorous (((media))) workers — should his rather unlikely phantasy of becoming Chancellor of Australia ever come to pass.

¯\_(ツ)_/¯

Still, Cottrell does have his supporters, from former Chief Minister of the Northern Territory Adam Giles to Republican congressman Steve King to ex-British National Party and neo-Nazi activist Mark Collett, and is regularly featured on ‘The Unhinged’, by Claudia Benitez (on Facebook and YouTube), and was the dubious beneficiary of representation by barrister John Bolton (below, L to R : Bolton, Cottrell, ‘Mark McDonald’ (Squadron 88/The Lads Society), Oscar Tuckfield (NSW Young Nationals/The Lads Society).

Bolton himself has previously been active with Reclaim Australia, used his Freeze Peach to decry the presence of refugees in Eltham, and inter alia organised a farcical ‘International Freedom of Speech Day’ in Sydney in October last year, a YUGE event which attracted the participation of his neo-Nazi client, Nick Folkes (ex-Party for Freedom), ‘Mark McDonald’, NSW True Blue Crew lvl boss ‘Mitch van Dam’, and various members of both grouplets (Dwayne Bullen, Max Towns), other former Reclaimers, and Peanuts — even Rino ‘Bluebeard’ Grgurovic put in an appearance(!).

Among those attending court in support of Cottrell were Benitez (‘Dia Beltran’) and Timmeh! Wilms (above) of ‘The Unhinged’ website and ‘The Cuckables’ podcast. Cottrell’s previous court appearance in November attracted (among others) Benitez, Wilms, Melinda Cassidy, Neil Erikson, Lea Galligah, Kimberley Neave, Kaylene O’Brien, Luke Phipps, Ian Sayer and Tom Sewell. Sewell, like Cottrell, was a leading member of the United Patriots Front. While alleged Christchurch killer Brenton Tarrant described Cottrell as his ’emperor’ a few years before allegedly proceeding to massacre 51 Muslims in March, Sewell tried to recruit this same brave ANZAC to his neo-Nazi grouplet ‘The Lads Society’, the group emerging following the collapse of Facebook’s support for the UPF. Happily enough, The Lads, after losing their bunker in Cheltenham, have recently re-opened an organising and training centre elsewhere in Melbourne. As for Erikson, he returns to court on February 18 next year to contest charges of disrupting Christian and Muslim religious services.

Finally, one of Cottrell’s elderly fanboys, Julian de Ross, has died. You may remember de Ross (AKA Hugh Pearson/Great Aussie Patriarch/John Sobieski/Koala732) from such campaigns as ‘Refugees Out Of Eltham’, ‘Melton Against The Muslims’, ‘Melbourne Loves Milo’, ‘Africans Out Of Cheltenham’ and numerous other daft right-wing stunts.

PS. Bellingcat, in collaboration with the Autonomous Disinformation Research Network, has just published a lengthy article on the Iron March leaks: Transnational White Terror: Exposing Atomwaffen And The Iron March Networks. Note that former UPF goon Shermon Burgess was briefly active on the site, along with the founders and various members of Antipodean Resistance (many of whom have now entered The Lads Society).

In this essay, we use content analysis of archival documents available online, spatial analysis of leaked data, and an hour-long interview of a former Atomwaffen member to expose the origins of Iron March, its founder, and its strategic cultivation of young recruits into a ruthless transnational movement infiltrating the military to generate a fascist revolution by carrying out a brutal campaign against civic infrastructure.

antifa notes (may 29, 2019) : 2019 Australian federal election edition

Joy of Fools!

Briefly:

• To the surprise of pundits and pollsters, the ruling Liberal-National Coalition won majority government at the 2019 Australian federal election, with a likely total of 77 seats in the 151-seat parliament. Rah rah rah! They’re going to smash the oiks!

• Many blame rural and regional Queenslanders, along with the good burghers of western Sydney, for Labor’s loss. In Queensland, Labor’s equivocal position on the Adani coal mine has been blamed for it obtaining an extraordinarily low primary vote; further, ‘Labor was decimated in Queensland, but an examination of the “Adani” coal mining seats of Dawson, Capricornia and Flynn for example show a negligible increase in the LNP primary vote but a collapse in Labor’s vote and subsequent increase in One Nation’s vote’ (Labor has a problem and its name is Pauline, Jody Fassina, The Sydney Morning Herald, May 28, 2019). In Sydney, ‘Labor bled votes in its heartland of western Sydney because aspirational voters feared its economic policies, while social conservatism was another factor cited by experts and insiders for the party’s loss of supporters’ (Why Labor bled votes in its Western Sydney ‘heartland’, Rashida Yosufzai, SBS, May 24, 2019). See also : It wasn’t Bob Brown who lost the election, it was the Labor Party, James Norman, ABC, May 26, 2019 | It’s a myth that Aussie battlers handed the Coalition its election victory, Shaun Ratcliff, The Guardian, May 24, 2019 | North Queensland is just at the sharp end of what’s happening across Australia, Jason Wilson, The Guardian, May 21, 2019.

• Preference flows from Pauline Hanson’s One Nation Party (PHONy) and Clive Palmer’s United Australia Party (UAP) voters appear to have secured victory for the Coalition in a number of seats in Queensland, but the billionaire mining magnate failed to (again) get bumped into parliament, none of UAP’s candidate obtained more than a handful of votes, and while PHONy didn’t do too badly — its national primary vote doubled — it too failed to gain any further seats, with Senator Peter Georgiou (WA) out and Malcolm Roberts (QLD) in.

• Outside of PHONy and UAP, the right-wing micro-parties — Dr Jim Saleam’s Australia First Party (AFP), Fraser Anning’s Conservative National Party (FACNP), Rod Culleton’s The Great Australian Party (GAP), Kim Vuga’s Love Australia Or Leave (LAOL), Danny Nalliah’s Rise Up Australia Party (RUAP), Debbie Robinson’s Yellow Vest Australia (YVA) — fared poorly at the ballot box. Still: ‘Rising White Nationalism Was The Real Story Of Australia’s Elections’, according to James Muldoon, who argues that ‘It’s too early to obtain exact figures, but it looks like over 1,000,000 first preferences were directed towards right-wing minor parties – xenophobes were spoilt for choice.’ On the other hand, white nationalist Queensland Senator Fraser ‘Final Solution’ Anning — that dawg — failed in his attempt to retain his spot in the Senate, receiving less than 30,000 votes (about 1.3%), while in the Lower House, no FACNP candidate managed to break thru the magical 4% barrier, with most receiving 1 or 2% and generally being ranked last or near-last. And why did Anning and his party fail? According to the reject(ed) senator: ‘I think we got dudded at the counting stations. We’re investigating that now. But that’s what you’d come to expect from a socialist government.’ *Note that Max Towns, the over-enthusiastic fascist teenybopper and Anning fan who allegedly assaulted overly-critical journalists at the launch of FACNP’s campaign in Cronulla a month ago, pleaded not guilty at a hearing on May 17; he returns to court on June 27.

See also : Australia’s Federal Elections and Far Right Normalisation, The White Rose Society, Hope Not Hate, May 17, 2019 | Labor’s election defeat reveals its continued inability to convince people it can make their lives better, Geoffrey Robinson, The Conversation, May 19, 2019 | Ten piping hot takes on Labor’s election defeat, The Banner Bright, May 21, 2019 | ACTU launches review of $25m election campaign after Labor defeat, Lisa Martin, The Guardian, May 24, 2019 | Shocked by the rise of the right? Then you weren’t paying attention, Gary Younge, The Guardian, May 24, 2019.

Swastika Cupcakes!

Last week, in a joint investigation by the ABC and 9/Fairfax, several articles were published about a Canberra-based neo-Nazi couple, Justin Beulah and Lisa Sandford. You may remember Beulah and Sandford from the failed attempt to infiltrate the NSW Young Nationals late last year — or perhaps as some of the voices on AltRight podcast ‘The Convict Report’.

‘Swastika cupcakes’: private chats of neo-Nazis who stacked Young Nats, Patrick Begley, The Sydney Morning Herald, May 23, 2019:

Secret conversations between neo-Nazis who tried to take over the NSW Young Nationals have been uncovered in a leak of online chat logs that also reveal contact with a leading US alt-right figure.

A joint Herald-ABC investigation has identified several Australians within a previously hidden online world, where racists post memes, share gun pictures and discuss real-life meetings …

…. a fascist Australian couple … courted each other online with talk of “swastika cupcakes” and “jokes” about killing non-white people.

Justin Beulah was a Young Liberal university student at the time of the 2017 messages. He and his now wife Lisa Sandford, a former One Nation member, then joined a far-right attempt to branch stack the NSW Young Nationals last year.

The couple say they have now abandoned the “toxic” white supremacy movement and urge others to do the same.

Married to the alt-right, Elise Worthington, ABC, May 23, 2019:

The clandestine activities of an Australian neo-Nazi couple and their network have been exposed in a leak of hundreds of thousands of secret messages from a forum used by American white supremacists.

A joint investigation by ABC News and The Sydney Morning Herald reveals the pair also tried to recruit others to their cause and spread their views to mainstream political parties.

The messages, which date back from 2017, show that they engaged in racist, anti-Semitic and homophobic slurs, as they conversed in a closed community of like-minded zealots.

The investigation identified the couple as Canberra newlyweds Lisa Beulah (née Sandford) and her husband, Justin, who say they have now renounced their former lives.

For what it’s worth, I don’t believe that Beulah and Sandford have had a genuine change of heart, nor that this supposed shift took place post-Charlottesville (August 2017) as they claim. Thus in reality, both celebrated Heather Heyer’s murder.

Beulah:

Sandford:

Sandford’s account of how she drifted from ‘anti-feminism’ to antisemitism/white supremacy/neo-Nazism is also contradicted by the biographical one she provides on Discord, in which she attributes responsibility for her adult worldview to her father, a bonehead, who fed her a steady diet of war propaganda growing up:

There’s numerous other problems with Beulah and Sandford’s account, but I’ll leave it up to the reader to detect them.

As I see it, the story is really one in which, under media scrutiny, a newly-married (February 2019) couple has decided that distancing themselves from their neo-Nazi beliefs is probably A Very Good Idea. Thus while claiming to have abandoned the “toxic” white supremacy movement, when contacted by media about her views and opinions, Lisa sought counsel from leading Melbourne neo-Nazi Blair Cottrell (whose trial for religious vilification fangirl Lisa attended). In any case, anybody interested in reading the thousands of comments the couple made on Discord should consult Unicorn Riot’s logs. See : MsNatSocialist (Discord ID: 279874893846413313) and Brad Small (Discord ID: 211098280761884672). *Note that Clifford Jennings (‘The Dingoes’) was also active as ARA1788.

Serial Pests!

1) E r i k s o n

A few months ago, Melbourne’s premiere neo-Nazi serial pest, Neil Erikson, made a number of claims about meeting and organising with several Coalition MPs, viz, Andrew Hastie and Ian Goodenough in Perth: Hastie denied all knowledge. Erikson later claimed to have attended, along with his mate Ricky Turner and FACNP candidate and Erikson’s former ‘United Patriots Front’ comrade Scott Moerland, another meeting on the Gold Coast last year, organised by Liberal Party hacks in order to discuss how-to stack a branch with ‘conservatives’. (Moerland ran for Pauline Hanson’s former seat of Oxley, and received a little over 1,400 votes (1.6%) for his troubles — as a RUAP candidate in 2013, Moerland got just 400 votes, so well done Scott.)

Guest speakers at the Queensland recruitment drive included David Goodwin – a former LNP Senate candidate and former president of the Young Nationals and the Young LNP – and Victorian conservative Elliot Watson.

At the function, which is understood to have been held at a private residence, Goodwin and Watson both spoke about the need to recruit more conservatives into the party.

Watson, who is reportedly one of a number of Mormons appointed as party delegates in the Victorian Liberal Party, is credited with playing a “leading role” in recruiting conservatives to the Victorian branch of the party.

The Victorian branch of the party has been riven by factional divisions, amid claims that an insurgent group led by hardliner Marcus Bastiaan is pushing the Liberals too far to the right.

At the time of the Gold Coast meeting in June 2018, Erikson had acquired some sugar-daddies: Queensland businessmen, failed political entrepreneurs and Mormons Ben and Dan Spiller (AKA ‘AE Media’ and ‘Future Now Australia’). Thus the meeting appears to have taken place at the same time that Erikson and Turner paid an unscheduled nocturnal visit to the private residence of David Pellowe, a sometime rival of the Spillers on the AltRight tour-circuit.

Erikson later claimed that he met with former Victorian Liberals leader Matthew Guy during the Victorian state election campaign of last year (a claim Guy strongly denies). For its part, Victoria Labor issued a statement (May 6, 2019) demanding that ‘Victorian Liberals Must Explain Extremist Links’. The saga to that date is summarised by Richard James in Here’s Everything We Know So Far About Far-Right Activist Neil Erikson’s Alleged Meetings With The Liberal Party (Buzzfeed, May 7, 2019), but under pressure and having already lost almost all of his Facebook and Twitter accounts, Erikson eventually closed his gab account too, along with his wesbshite (neilerikson dot com).

He still maintains a YouTube channel but. See also : Far-right activist admits: ‘I lied about meeting WA MPs Hastie, Goodenough’, Nathan Hondros, WA Today, May 21, 2019.

via Puf Pitchers

On May 12, the pest was at it again, only this time in the company of AltRight chum Claudia Benitez (AKA ‘Dia Beltran’), who together decided it would be fun! to interrupt a church service at West Hawthorn Uniting Church, it having been selected by the pair on account of its queer-friendly status. To cut a long story short, it appears as though — apart from anything else — Benitez lost her job at a local orthodontic clinic as a result of her participation in the idiotic stunt.

¯\_(ツ)_/¯

Having disturbed a gathering of “faggots” on Sunday, on Monday Erikson was in court, along with Turner, to face charges arising from the Milo stoopid of December 2017. Erikson was later found guilty of affray & assault with a weapon, and received a 120-hour community corrections order as punishment; Turner accepted a plea deal of a $1,000 fine and a 12-month good-behaviour bond. (Last month, Erikson’s olde nazi chum Richard Whelan had his charges dropped, and earlier Dwayne McKenzie and Garry Hume received diversion orders, as did Soldier of Odin Garry Mattsson.)

Convicted racist Neil Erikson spared jail despite assault and affray conviction
Genevieve Alison
Herald Sun
May 16, 2019

Convicted racist Neil Erikson has been spared prison for his role in a Right-wing riot after begging a magistrate not to jail him because he is soon to become a father.

After a two-day hearing, Erikson, 33, was this week found guilty of affray and assault with a weapon in a brawl during which hundreds of protesters clashed with police.

A charge of inciting riotous behaviour was dismissed.

Erikson’s lawyer, John Bolton, unsuccessfully argued his client had been acting in self-defence during a confrontation with a group protesting against a speaking appearance by Right-wing commentator Milo Yiannopoulos in Kensington on December 4, 2017.

Erikson told police he had been “in fear” and only stepped in to protect his friends because police “were nowhere”.

And Mr Bolton argued in the Melbourne Magistrates’ Court that Erikson was forced into the confrontation and had been protecting his mates when he punched, kicked and hit protesters with a pole.

But after viewing hours of CCTV footage from news media and police bodycams, which showed dozens of riot squad officers rushing to break up the violence, magistrate Michael Smith said Erikson had entered the affray voluntarily.

“No one was attacking him at the time,” Mr Smith said.

“He’s standing on the edge and voluntarily entered the ­affray with his banner.”

Erikson told the court he regretted the incident and was “never looking for any trouble that day”.

He pleaded with Mr Smith not to lock him up, because he was about to become a father.

The far-Right activist said while he received a small income from making “political videos”, he had been jobless for some time after finding it difficult to get a job because of his “political history”.

Erikson is one of the first people in Victoria to have been charged under racial vilification laws.

In 2017, he and two others were convicted of inciting contempt for Muslims and fined $2000 after they filmed a video of themselves beheading a mannequin outside Bendigo council offices in 2015.

The film was meant as a protest against the construction of a local mosque.

And last year, he was found guilty of contempt of court for failing to observe orders that he take down social media posts of himself wearing a uniform of a former employer.

One of those posts showed him haranguing former senator Sam Dastyari in a pub.

Mr Smith sentenced Erikson to a 12-month Community Corrections Order.

2) Y e m i n e m

Also experiencing some legal difficulties at the moment is Erikson’s rival serial pest Avi Yeminem. (Note that Yeminem’s party, Yellow Vest Australia, held a fairly desultory rally in Melbourne on May 4: a few dozen attended, while at the federal election just under 1,800 (0.06%) voted for the party for the Senate in Victoria — a drop of 0.60% since 2016.)

Avi Yemini in court over assault, knife-throwing charges against woman
Jon Andrews
Caulfield Glen Eira Leader
May 2, 2019

Activist and self-defence guru Avi Yemini has appeared in court facing charges that he injured, harassed and threw a knife at the face of a woman.

Mr Yemini, whose real first name is Avraham, pleaded not guilty to eight charges at Moorabbin Magistrates’ Court yesterday morning.

The 33-year-old’s case was adjourned until next month, with his lawyer saying he will contest the case.

Court documents released to the Leader state he has been charged with recklessly causing injury to a woman at a Caulfield North premises on March 18, 2016.

Police allege on the same day he also recklessly engaged in conduct by throwing a knife at the victim’s face that placed her in danger of serious injury.

They also believe in December 2015, three times in July 2017 and again in November last year he used a carriage service to harass her.

A summary of his alleged offending was not released.

The self-proclaimed “proud Ozraeli” promotes himself as someone who empowers women through self-defence classes.

A former Israel Defence Force soldier, he has a large Facebook following under his page Avi Yemini Unbanned and is an avid Twitter user, reaching out to his more than 43,000 fans.

His website states he is a voice for “issues relating to self-defence, counter-terrorism, being pro-Israel in Australia and the Jewish community in Melbourne”.

Considered as a far-right political activist, he failed in his bid last year to become an Upper House Victorian MP.

His lawyer, Deborah Mandie, told the court she believed the reckless cause injury charge was likely to be withdrawn, and the knife-throwing incident was disputed.

She said the defence needed statements regarding the carriage service to harass charges, which the police prosecution said they would be happy to provide.

Mr Yemini was bailed to his Berwick home on the condition he did not contact any witnesses.

He will appear in court again on June 13.

Balwyn Calling!

The Christchurch massacre continues to have some minor repercussions in the land of the alleged killer’s birth. Thus Tom Sewell, the fuehrer of neo-Nazi groupsucule The Lads Society, featured in ‘Threats from white extremist group that ‘tried to recruit Tarrant” (Patrick Begley, The Sydney Morning Herald, May 2, 2019), which details a sooky Sewell’s response to inquiries regarding the relationship between the Society and Brenton Tarrant.

“The difference between my organisation, myself and him [Tarrant], is simply that we believe, certainly at this stage, that there is a peaceful solution for us to create the society we want to live in,” Mr Sewell said.

“We want a peaceful alternative, we want to be treated with respect, we want to be left alone. If we are not given that opportunity, well, time will tell. I’m not going to give you any explicit threat but it’s pretty f–king obvious what’s going to happen.”

Mr Sewell said “we’re all gravy at the moment” because police were leaving his group alone but that people were “making the world burn, and they have names and addresses.”

At least The Lads don’t have access to firearms eh?

Bookface!

Facebook gonna Facebook, amirite? See : ‘Good PR but ultimately useless’: Facebook slammed over election ad transparency, Jennifer Duke, The Sydney Morning Herald, May 27, 2019 | Alt-right Facebook memes pushed anti-Labor message, Nigel Gladstone and Max Koslowski, The Sydney Morning Herald, May 26, 2019. See also : Minds, the ‘Anti-Facebook,’ Has No Idea What to Do About All the Neo-Nazis, Ben Makuch and Jordan Pearson, Vice, May 29, 2019 | Live Coverage Of A Disinformation Operation Against The 2019 EU Parliamentary Elections, Andy Patel, F-Secure, May 24, 2019.

Neo-Nazi Blair Cottrell fails in court

The former leader of the now-defunct ‘United Patriots Front’ turned ‘The Lads Society’ organiser, Blair Cottrell, was in court again today …

Far-right leader Blair Cottrell fails in High Court bid
AAP
February 19, 2019

Far-right activist Blair Cottrell has been rejected in his bid to fight for “free speech” in the High Court but will continue his campaign in Victoria’s County Court.

The United Patriots Front leader appeared in the County Court today to appeal his conviction for inciting hatred, contempt and ridicule of Muslims, after making a video beheading a dummy in protest of a Bendigo mosque. Cottrell and supporters Neil Erikson and Christopher Neil Shortis were convicted in September 2017 and fined $2000 each.

Lawyer John Bolton had lodged an application with the High Court, arguing Cottrell had been charged with an “invalid law” under the Australian constitution.

He previously told AAP “free speech” was protected under the constitution, “which protects political discourse”.

However, Mr Bolton told Judge Lisa Hannan on Tuesday the High Court dismissed the application, referring the matter back to the County Court. The lawyer said he would now argue there was “no such class of persons as Muslims” that could be offended by the video, given the variety among the Islamic faith.

“Who is this supposed to have caused people to think bad thoughts about?” he argued, adding he’d call witnesses to examine “what ‘Muslim’ means”. He added a comment about Saudi Arabian beheadings, to which Judge Hannan quickly replied was “not relevant”.

Mr Bolton also asked the judge to hear the “constitutional matter”, requiring her to notify the attorney-general but she said she didn’t have power to determine a constitutional matter.

The prosecution plans to call six witnesses to the trial, including City of Bendigo council workers and police.

“It’s being drawn out deliberately, I think, probably to see how much money we’ve got,” Cottrell told reporters outside court.

“I’m not going to give up.” Cottrell was supported in court by Erikson, who earlier abandoned his appeal bid.

After the hearing, Cottrell tweeted a video telling followers he hadn’t “failed anything”.

“The prosecution has found a law that the County Court can hear that matter — the High Court doesn’t need to, so the constitutional matter has been sent back to County Court for Judge Hannan to hear,” he said.

“I haven’t failed anything. The matter is still active. The law still may be unconstitutional.” The appeal was set down for 10 days from August 8, which Judge Hannan said she thought was too long.

Cottrell next returns to court on June 5 for directions.

See also : Far-right leader fails in High Court bid, Amber Wilson/AAP, news dot com dot au, February 19, 2019 | Far-right activist Blair Cottrell to continue ‘fight for free speech’ after High Court bid rejected, Benjamin Ansell/AAP, 9 News, February 19, 2019.

• As reported here and elsewhere (9 News), serial pest and former UPF flunkey Neil Erikson was also in court to support his former fuehrer — Erikson is due back in Melbourne Magistrates’ Court in May to fight charges of assault, riot and affray.

• Lawyer John Bolton repped Erikson at a previous court hearing in June, at which he successfully argued for an alteration in bail conditions so as to allow Erikson & Co. to do politics ‘n’ that. ABC: ‘A magistrate agreed to vary the men’s bail conditions today to allow them to associate for the “purpose of engaging in lawful political communication or assembling lawfully”. Outside court, Mr Erikson said it was important the group could “meet up and discuss politics” as they planned to register a political party called Cooks Convicts.’ Naturally, the party was never registered, and the name abandoned for another, ‘It’s OK To Be White’, which was also never registered; currently, Erikson is promoting Fraser ‘Final Solution’ Anning’s new party, the ‘Conservative Nationals’. See : Fraser Anning’s Neo-Nazi connections, The White Rose Society, January 11, 2019.

Above (L to R) : John Bolton, Blair Cottrell, Mark McDonald, Oscar Tuckfield. McDonald is the former fuehrer of neo-Nazi groupuscule ‘Squadron 88’ turned The Lads Society organiser in Sydney; on Tuckfield and McDonald, see also : Neo-Nazi infiltration of the Young Nationals in NSW (October 11, 2018).

• In October last year, Bolton organised a very smol ‘International Freedom of Speech’ rally outside Lakemba, which was attended by Cottrell, a smattering of local neo-Nazis, and various other odds & sods, including Rino ‘Bluebeard’ Grgurovic — Grgurovic is due in Melbourne Magistrates’ Court on February 26 over assault charges.

• As 9 News notes, Cottrell ‘has been convicted of numerous serious offences including arson and stalking’, along with seven counts of intentionally damaging property, failing to comply with a community-based order, two counts of recklessly causing serious injury, aggravated burglary, property damage, trafficking testosterone, possessing a controlled weapon and breaching court orders. Cottrell, as ‘Bruce’, appeared in a documentary about youth in the maximum-security Youth Unit at Port Phillip Prison in Truganina, in which he describes how he abused steroids, stalked his former partner and her boyfriend, tried to kill him, set fire to their house, and eventually got arrested, convicted, and sent to prison. You can read more about Cottrell’s political views here.

Neo-Nazi group ‘The Lads Society’ @ 34 Thomas Street, Ashfield, Sydney : Help shut it down!

Neo-Nazi grouplet ‘The Lads Society’ — which arose from the ashes of the ‘United Patriots Front’ (UPF) and its stillborn political party ‘Fortitude’ (2015–2017) — currently operate two social centres, one in the south-east suburb of Cheltenham in Melbourne and the other in Ashfield in inner-west Sydney.

The centre in Cheltenham (Unit 9/158 Chesterville Road), which opened in October 2017, is scheduled to close in January 2019.

No reason has been given for the closure of the bunker in Cheltenham, but it’s worth noting that the estate agents listed the property as being available on November 7, just a few short weeks after an ABC exposé (in which Lads members starred) on neo-Nazi infiltration into the NSW branch of the Young Nationals.

The centre in Ashfield also featured in the exposé.

Spearheaded by the former fuehrer of short-lived neo-Nazi grouplet ‘Squadron 88’, Mark McDonald, The Lads Society centre in Ashfield is located at No.34 Thomas Street, and leased by way of the Colemon Property Group.

You may remember Squadron 88 from such exciting escapades as when they stuffed letterboxes in Bondi with anti-Semitic tracts in August 2014. And again in September 2014. Or, when they briefly adopted geriatric neo-Nazi Ross ‘The Skull’ May as the group’s mascot.


Above (L to R) : John Bolton (Cottrell’s lawyer/ex-Australian Liberty Alliance), Blair Cottrell (UPF/Lads), Mark McDonald (Squadron 88/Lads), Oscar Tuckfield (Young Nationals/Lads).

In response to the establishment of The Lads in Cheltenham, a local group formed, ‘South East Community Action’, to campaign to close the neo-Nazi organising space.

Now, in response to the establishment of The Lads Society in Ashfield, another campaigning group has formed: ‘Ashfield Community Action’ (Facebook /// Twitter). To keep abreast of its progress, please like/share/follow their social media.

Finally:

• Ashfield was the site of a previous neo-Nazi infestation in the 1960s.

• The Lads have been making noises about setting up shop in both Adelaide and Brisbane. Something of the flavour of the group’s membership was given when two were chucked out of a bar in Brisbane for throwing up Nazi salutes.

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2018 Victorian state election : far right (and left) candidates

Below : Serial pest Neil Erikson interrupts a Channel 7 broadcast from Bourke Street yesterday. ALA candidate Avi Yemini also sought to capitalise upon the tragedy, today holding a smol rally at the site. This political opportunism is explored by the Online Hate Prevention Institute in Bourke Street Attack November 2018.

In a truly shocking development, serial pests Neil Erikson and Ricky Turner (‘Cooks Convicts’) will not be standing for office at the Victorian state election on November 24. Shocking and surprising, given that back in June, barrister John Bolton successfully argued for an alteration to their bail conditions on the basis that they needed their freedumbs to be political ‘n’ that (Right-wing activists face court, then announce plans for own party, Amber Wilson, The Age, June 8, 2018):

Outside court, Mr Erikson said Mr Turner, aka “Ricky T”, planned to stand as a political candidate for a yet-to-be established far-right political party called Cooks Convicts with a focus on “Australian values”.

He said he hoped the group could register before the November Victorian election, but couldn’t confirm which electorates they would contest.

“We’re going to be running on old-school, anti-PC policies,” Mr Erikson said.

Instead of and/or, Erikson is urging a vote for Lobster Guy and the party of Law & Order:

Australia First

Susan Jakobi is running for the Australia First Party in the seat of Cranbourne as an independent (the party is not registered in Victoria). Jakobi contested the federal seat of Lalor for the party in 2016, gaining 3,232 (3.0%) votes and placing fifth of five candidates.

Australian Liberty Alliance

With the decision by Cory Bernardi’s Conservatives and Pauline Hanson’s One Nation not to field candidates, together with the departure of the Australian Christians, Family First and Rise Up Australia Party, the ALA is the only right-wing micro-party still having a crack in 2018. Antony Green:

The overall fall from 545 to 507 candidates masks a significant shift to the left in the party composition of nominations.

Three small moral conservative parties that contested the 2014 election are no longer registered, Family First, Rise Up Australia, and the Australian Christians.

Family First contested all 88 electorates in 2006, 69 in 2010 and 39 in 2014. The Australian Christian[s] contested 30 electorates in 2014 and Rise Up Australia 32. In total this means there are 101 fewer candidates representing small parties of the right …

Family First and parts of the Australian Christians have been absorbed by [Cory] Bernardi’s Australian Conservatives, hoping to improve conservative prospects of winning Senate seats at the next federal election. The absorption of Family First into the Australian Conservatives was also a consequence of former Senator Bob Day’s departure from politics.

Despite having registered for the 2018 election, neither the Australian Conservatives nor Pauline Hanson’s One Nation have nominated candidates for the election. This leaves a hole on the right of Victorian politics that may boost the Coalition primary vote but will have little other impact on the overall result.

Funnily enough, in every Upper House region the ALA will be pitted against the newly-formed Victorian Socialists:

Eastern Metropolitan
Indhira Bivieca & Royston Wilding* (ALA) vs Norrian Rundle & Liam Ward (VS)
Northern Metropolitan
Russell Gomez & John Reisner vs Stephen Jolly, Sue Bolton & Colleen Bolger
South-Eastern Metropolitan
David Sydney Maddison & Ralf Schumann vs Aran Mylvaganam & Ben Reid
Southern Metropolitan Region
‘Tiny’ Avi Yemini & Kaylah Jones vs Catheryn Lewis & Ivan Mitchell
Western Metropolitan
Francine Cohen & Terri Franklin vs Jorge Jorquera & Andrew Charles

Eastern Victoria
Mark Brown & Daniel Jones vs Lainie Cruse & Russell Forden
Northern Victoria
Ewan McDonald & James Wylie vs Moira McDonald & Michael McKenna
Western Victoria
Kenneth Nichols & Daniel MacDonald vs Tim Gooden & Nada Iskra

*Wilding stood as a candidate for the Secular Party for the seat of Melbourne in the 2013 federal election and with 230 votes (0.27%), Wilding came 12th of 16 candidates.

**Jones is best-known for being ‘Tiny’ Avi Yeminem’s personal bodyguard and as a semi-professional cosplayer (Melbourne’s answer to George Jameson), but was last seen helping to provide, along with some Lads, security for the March for Babies. He’s pictured below in the company of Tiny and members of The Lads and True Blue Crew at the Milo Yiannopoulos event at Melbourne Pavilion in December 2017. (In the second image Jones, who works in the security industry, fantasises about being given a licence to kill.)

The ALA is also running a candidate, Siobhann Brown, in the Lower House seat of Yan Yean.

Victorian Socialists

As for the Victorian Socialists, they’re running candidates in no fewer than 15 districts: Bellarine (Jackie Kriz); Broadmeadows (Jerome Small); Buninyong (Jane McKendrick); Geelong (Sarah Hathway); Lara (Dean Cardigan); Lowan (Trevor Grenfell); Melton (Ron Guy); Pascoe Vale (Gerry Beaton); Polwarth (Brendan Murphy); Preston (Stephanie Price); Ripon (Bronwyn Jennings); South Barwon (David Ball); South-West Coast (Terry Riggs); Thomastown (Kath Larkin) and; Wendouree (Jeremy Smith).

While the Socialist Alliance and Socialist Alternative have thrown their weight behind the Victorian Socialists, sadly, the Socialist Equality Party (which ran four candidates at the 2015 NSW state election), will not be running any candidates at this election (and has denounced the Victorian Socialists as ‘pseudo-left’). Solidarity, for its part, took note of the Victorian Socialists in a recent article on the election.