EDL founder Tommy Robinson loses harassment court case against Cambridgeshire police at Peterborough County Court

Tommy Robinson outside court. Photo: Terry Harris
Tommy Robinson outside court. Photo: Terry Harris

English Defence League (EDL) founder Tommy Robinson has lost his court case against Cambridgshire Police which he claimed harassed him by moving him on from a pub.

Mr Robinson, appearing in court under his real name Stephen Yaxley-Lennon, claimed police targeted him because of his beliefs.

He was in a Cambridge pub after he took his children to see Luton Town play away against Cambridge United in August 2016.

Sergeant Paul Street, who moved Mr Yaxley-Lennon on, told Peterborough County Court that he did not know who Mr Yaxley-Lennon was at the time.

He said he moved Mr Yaxley-Lennon on due to intelligence that he was a football supporter likely to cause trouble and was with a group of other “risk” supporters.

Judge Karen Walden-Smith said: “In my judgment there’s no evidence that Mr Lennon was being treated differently because of his beliefs about fundamentalist Islam.”

Giving her judgment following a four day hearing, she added: “Mr Lennon isn’t as well-known as he and his supporters may think.”

After the judge read out her decision on Friday, there was a shout of “the law’s an ass” from the public gallery and Mr Yaxley-Lennon said the judgment reflected the “entire corrupt system”.

Mr Yaxley-Lennon said in evidence that he was drinking water and the judge did not make a determination on this.

She said that “as any good parent would, Mr Lennon tried to shield his children” from what was happening but said officers who followed him towards the station had followed “proper procedure” to ensure he did not loop back and return to the pub.

Judge Walden-Smith ruled that all of his claims, including several under the Human Rights Act, had failed.

Sgt Street earlier told the court that he did not know who Mr Yaxley-Lennon was and thought the name referred to an “80s football hooligan”.

Mr Yaxley-Lennon said he was with his three children, aged between five and nine at the time, on a family day out.

Alison Gurden, representing the 36-year-old, said Sgt Street “didn’t take into account factors that he should have done”.

She said Mr Yaxley-Lennon had been going in and out of the pub to see his children outside.

“It wasn’t necessary (to move him on) as there was... nothing to indicate Mr Lennon was likely to become involved in disorder,” she said.

“He’s there with his children and he’s certainly not dressed for a fight, he’s in his flip-flops.”

She said Mr Yaxley-Lennon believed he was “discriminated against on the grounds of being Tommy Robinson and his beliefs”.

The judge ordered that Mr Yaxley-Lennon pay £20,000 towards the defendant's costs.

Mr Yaxley-Lennon said outside court that he would appeal against the judgment.