Mark Collett

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Mark Collett
Born Mark Adrian Collette
October 3, 1980
Rothley, Borough of Charnwood, Leicestershire, England
Nationality British
Education Loughborough Grammar School
Alma mater University of Leeds
Occupation Political activist
Known for Former chairman of Youth BNP
Movement Far-right[1]
Alt-right[2]

Mark Adrian Collett (/ˈkɒlət/; born 3 October 1980) is a British far-right[1] political activist. He is a former chairman of the Young BNP, the youth division of the British National Party (BNP), and was director of publicity for the party before his BNP membership was suspended in early April 2010.

Early life and education[edit]

From Rothley, Collett was educated at Loughborough Grammar School and the University of Leeds where he received a lower second-class honours degree in business economics.[3]

Media appearances[edit]

Channel 4 documentary[edit]

Collett featured on a Channel 4 documentary on the BNP - Young, Nazi and Proud broadcast in 2002 which concentrated almost exclusively on Collett. He declared his admiration for Adolf Hitler and said that he considered AIDS a "friendly disease because blacks, drug users and gays have it", unaware he was being recorded.[3][4] Collett made similar remarks while on Russell Brand's 2002 TV show RE:Brand, in which he described homosexuals as "AIDS Monkeys", "bum bandits" and "faggots".[5] Collett was sacked from his position in the party and expelled days after the Channel 4 documentary was broadcast, although party leaders continued to share speaking platforms with him. However he was allowed to rejoin a few days later with chairman Nick Griffin saying that he must change his views on the subject. Collett was the party's head of publicity and produced the party's monthly magazine Identity.[6]

BBC documentary and subsequent trial[edit]

As a result of a police investigation into another documentary, BBC One's The Secret Agent, which in July 2004 broadcast secret footage of Collet making derogatory remarks about asylum seekers, whom he called "cockroaches".[4] Collett, then aged 24, was bailed on race hate offences at Leeds magistrates' court on 7 April 2005 alongside party founder John Tyndall and party leader Nick Griffin. The trial ended on 2 February 2006 after a jury acquitted Collett of two charges of using words or behaviour intended to stir up racial hatred, and two alternative charges of using words likely to stir up racial hatred. The jury failed to reach a verdict in respect of a further four charges.

The Crown Prosecution Service subsequently announced that Collett and Griffin would face a retrial on the remaining charges of using words or behaviour intended to stir up racial hatred. This retrial began at Leeds Crown Court on 1 November 2006 and he and Griffin were found not guilty.[7]

Newsbeat interview[edit]

In October 2009, Collett and the BNP's record label executive Joseph Barber were interviewed on BBC Radio 1's Newsbeat bulletin, being introduced only as "Mark and Joey, two young guys who are members of the BNP". They said that the England international footballer Ashley Cole was not "ethnically British" due to having black heritage.[8] An internal inquiry at the BBC criticised the interviewers for not identifying the pair by their full names and positions in the BNP, and for not sufficiently challenging their remarks about Cole.[9]

Political activities[edit]

BNP leadership bid[edit]

In April, 2010 Collett was sacked from his job as BNP publicity chief and suspended from the party for being supportive of a leadership bid against Griffin,[10] and was subsequently arrested by Humberside police, who questioned him over alleged threats to kill Griffin.[11] Despite the reinstatement of Collett's party membership he did not stand for the party in the May 2010 general election. He had previously been selected as BNP candidate in Sheffield Brightside and Hillsborough, to challenge the then-Home Secretary David Blunkett.[12]

Humberside Police did not bring charges against Collett over the allegations of threats to kill, formally dismissing them later in 2010.[13]

Involvement in EU referendum campaign, 2016[edit]

During the 2016 EU referendum campaign, Collett was seen campaigning for Vote Leave and was featured in news articles by daily newspapers, including the Daily Mail, alongside his neo-Nazi partner Eva Van Housen, who displayed her Nazi tattoos for the publication.[14] BBC News later reported that Vote Leave warned Collett and Van Housen to stop using their Brexit campaign materials.[15]

Political views[edit]

Race and nationalism[edit]

Collett is a white nationalist.

Sex work: pornography and prostitution[edit]

Collett supports a ban on hardcore pornography. He supports legal but regulated prostitution.[16]

Elections contested[edit]

Date of election Constituency Party Votes % Source
2005 Leeds Central BNP 1201 4.1 The Guardian, 7 May 2005

See also[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ a b Cohen, Nick (18 October 2009). "How the BNP's far-right journey ends up on primetime TV". The Guardian. Retrieved 3 August 2018. Earlier this month, Radio 1's Newsbeat cutely allowed "Mark and Joey, two young guys who are members of the BNP", to imply that Chelsea and England footballer Ashley Cole was not really British. It did not reveal that "Mark" was Mark Collett, the BNP's press officer and an admirer of Nazism, and "Joey" was Joey Smith, who runs the BNP's record label.
  2. ^ "Mark Collett: Britain's Alt Right Social Media Propagandist". Anti-Defamation League. Retrieved 16 September 2018.
  3. ^ a b Channel 4 Documentary - Dispatches: Young, Nazi and Proud (2002) Video
  4. ^ a b Morris, Nigel; Peck, Tom (4 April 2010). "BNP official arrested over claims he threatened to kill Nick Griffin". The Independent on Sunday. Retrieved 29 June 2017.
  5. ^ "Naziboy". RE:Brand. UK Play.
  6. ^ Editorial team Archived 7 January 2009 at the Wayback Machine., Identity website, accessed 26 November 2008
  7. ^ "BNP leader cleared of race hate". BBC News. 10 November 2006. Retrieved 12 May 2010.
  8. ^ Davies, Caroline (11 October 2009). "BBC faces inquiry calls after BNP comment on Ashley Cole on Radio 1". The Guardian online. Retrieved 3 August 2018.
  9. ^ "BBC's Radio 1 rapped for BNP's Ashley Cole interview". The Daily Telegraph. 12 January 2010. Retrieved 3 August 2018.
  10. ^ "BNP publicity chief sacked amid claims of 'palace coup' against leader Nick Griffin". Daily Mail. London. 4 April 2010.
  11. ^ "BNP's head of publicity arrested over threats to kill Nick Griffin in 'palace coup'". Daily Mail. London. 6 April 2010.
  12. ^ "'We won't be voting for Hitler fan'". Sheffield Star. 28 January 2010. Retrieved 19 June 2018.
  13. ^ "Police to take no further action over plot to kill head of BNP Nick Griffin". Sunday Mercury. Birmingham. 14 November 2010. Retrieved 1 January 2018.
  14. ^ "The neo-Nazi with a swastika on her breast... and Vote Leave badge on her vest: From Holocaust deniers to EDL fascists posing at the Kray twins' grave, the violent thugs and racists hijacking the Brexit campaign". Daily Mail. London. 24 June 2016.
  15. ^ "Vote Leave tell ex-BNP official Mark Collett to stop using their material". BBC News. London. 27 May 2016.
  16. ^ Mark Collett on Alt Hype's Ethnic Conservatism, Porn, Natl and More, YouTube