Stephen Yaxley-Lennon committed to prison for contempt of court

Tommy Robinson arrives at court

Tommy Robinson arrives at court

The court ruled that his actions could have jeopardised the trial of a gang of alleged sex offenders who were accused of abusing young girls.

Upon his arrival at the court alongside right-wing commentator Katie Hopkins, Robinson told Sky News he was "being sent to jail for doing what you do" and that his impending sentence was "illegal".

British far-right activist Tommy Robinson - real name Stephen Yaxley-Lennon - has been sentenced to nine months in jail over live broadcasting outside a rape trial past year.

The time Robinson previously spent behind bars will be taken into account, reducing his sentence to 19 weeks - of which he will serve half before being released.

His lawyer was forced to apologise when he arrived late for court.

A court later freed him and said more review was needed.

And then seemed to contradict the plea, with another plea for cash donations from his supporters, in a video filmed ahead of his sentencing on Thursday.

"I would urge everyone to think carefully about whether their social media posts could amount to contempt of court".

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In her ruling, judge Victoria Sharp said that in his video Yaxley-Lennon, who argued he is highlighting cases ignored by mainstream media, "approves and encourages vigilante action" and his viewers would have understood it as "an incitement to engage in harassment of the defendants".

Robinson told InfoWars on Monday that he had sought political asylum in the United States, claiming that he feared for his life as "dark forces are at work" in his home country.

Dozens of his supporters have gathered on the streets outside the court, amid a heavy police presence. However, Yaxley-Lennon's 90 minute video was streamed while the jury in the second trial was considering its verdict.

"By aggressively confronting and filming some of the defendants in that case as they arrived at court, he interfered with the course of justice", the British Attorney General's Office said a statement announcing the 9-month sentence Thursday.

The video was eventually viewed 3.4 million times after being shared following his arrest.

Speaking after his previous hearing, Attorney General Geoffrey Cox said: "Posting material online that breaches reporting restrictions or risks prejudicing legal proceedings is a very serious matter and this is reflected in the court's decision today".

During the 2018 case at Leeds Crown Court, reporting restrictions had been put in place postponing the publication of any details until the end of a series of linked trials involving 29 defendants.

He was originally sentenced to 13 months in jail last summer, but he only served two months after the contempt finding was overturned and he was released.

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