Huddersfield school attack suspect ‘shared Tommy Robinson posts on Facebook’
The schoolboy thought to be responsible for an attack on a young Syrian refugee which was captured on video has shared posts from the Facebook page of Tommy Robinson in the past.
The 16-year-old, who cannot be named for legal reasons, has been questioned by police about the footage, in which the 15-year-old victim, whose arm is in a sling, is thrown to the ground and threatened with drowning.
The video has been widely shared online, provoking outrage and prompting wellwishers to set up an online crowdfunding page for the victim which received £50,000 in donations in the space of a day.
The victim is seen in the video being dragged to the floor by his neck before his attacker says: "I'll drown you", while forcing water from a bottle into his mouth.
The perpetrator is thought to be a student at Almondbury Community School in Huddersfield and has been the subject of hundreds of violent threats online.
A Facebook account believed to belong to the boy features numerous posts shared from the page of English Defence League founder Robinson, a convicted fraudster whose real name is Stephen Yaxley-Lennon.
One of those posts, apparently referencing comments by Boris Johnson about Muslim women wearing veils, read: "Should Britain ban letterboxes because of all the trouble they're causing?"
Robinson was jailed for contempt of court earlier this year after posting videos about a child grooming trial involving a group of Asian men from Huddersfield. He was later freed on appeal.
Mohammed Tahir, who set up the crowdfunding page for the bullying victim, said he had been overwhelmed by the support it had received.
He said: "I can't thank everyone enough for the generous donations they have made.
"I am working alongside GoFundMe so we can make sure every last penny gets to the family and I want to thank them for their support."
Huddersfield MP Barry Sheerman said the video of the assault against one of his constituents was "absolutely shocking".
He tweeted: "Have been supporting the family since it was first brought to my attention.
"Understand from council that the school have taken strong action. Will be following up to ensure all available support is being given!"
A police investigation is underway into the video from a local school. Neither us nor the school condone violence in any form and behaviour like this will not be tolerated— Kirklees Council (@KirkleesCouncil) November 27, 2018
Superintendent Steve Dodds, of West Yorkshire Police Kirklees District, said: "We are investigating a report of a racially-aggravated assault of a 15-year-old boy which occurred on playing fields at Almondbury Community School at about 1pm on October 25.
"A 16-year-old boy has been interviewed by voluntary attendance in connection with the incident and we are continuing to progress the investigation."
Kirklees Council said: "Neither us nor the school condone violence in any form, and behaviour like this will not be tolerated."