LONDON — An officer in London’s foremost police pressure was convicted on Thursday of being a member of a banned neo-Nazi group, his pressure stated, changing into the primary British police officer to be convicted of a terrorism offense, in keeping with the BBC and different British news sources.
Benjamin Hannam, 22, a probationary police officer who utilized to the London pressure, the Metropolitan Police, in 2017 and joined it in early 2018, was discovered responsible of membership of a banned group — the neo-Nazi group National Action — in addition to two counts of fraud by false illustration and two counts of possession of doc prone to be of use to a terrorist, the police stated in a briefing.
The fraud costs associated to mendacity on utility types for his police place, native media at a courtroom in London reported.
Mr. Hannam demonstrated an “adherence to fascist ideology and a potentially veiled but nonetheless evident neo-Nazi mind-set,” the prosecutor, Dan Pawson-Pounds, stated in keeping with The Independent, including that he had met with folks at National Action occasions even after the group had been banned. The group, which praised the homicide of a British lawmaker, Jo Cox, was outlawed in December 2016.
The trial started in March, however the courtroom had banned reporting of its particulars to keep away from a danger of biasing future jurors in a separate case in opposition to Mr. Hannam, in keeping with native media. The restrictions had been lifted after Mr. Hannam pleaded responsible to possessing an indecent picture of a baby, which was to have been the topic of the second trial.
Mr. Hannam, who in courtroom denied being a member of the group, joined the London department of National Action in 2016, in keeping with the police briefing. He stated throughout the trial that he was interested in the “look and aesthetic of fascism,” however that he was not a racist, in keeping with the BBC.
He appeared in a propaganda video for the group the identical month he utilized to hitch the police pressure, although police stated his “known involvement” had ended by September 2017, a number of months earlier than he started police coaching. The pressure stated that he had hidden this historical past, and “had he been honest, this would have automatically precluded him from joining the Metropolitan Police Service.”
The Metropolitan Police have confronted accusations of racism and discriminatory practices, and the pressure stated in November that it could recruit extra minority officers in order to be extra consultant.