STEPHEN YAXLEY-LENNON, aka Tommy Robinson, has been told to pay £100,000 damages to a schoolboy that he libelled in 2018, with an estimated £500,000 is legal costs to settle, too.
The diminutive ex-convict fraudster made headlines last year when he announced he was seeking refuge in Marbella, despite persistently campaigning against refugees entering the UK for many years.
The founder of the English Defence League (EDL) responded to an online clip of school bullying by falsely claiming the 15-year old victim was guilty of threatening to stab others and attacking “young English girls”, himself.
Yaxley-Lennon’s rants were viewed some 950,000 times by his followers, and shared a further 25,000 times.
Support and funding from the public helped Jamal Hijazi’s family take Yaxley-Lennon to court for libel, citing possible long term harm to the teenager, now a trainee pharmacist.
The teen came to the UK with his family in October 2016 as part of the UK government’s Syrian refugee resettlement programme.
After the videos were posted, he said in his impact statement, he received a barrage of abuse and unwanted contact on social media, forcing him to change his name.
Hijazi said, “My family and I were forced to relocate from Huddersfield and move to a different part of the country to avoid risks to mine and my family’s safety, causing me and my family a lot of distress and sadness as we had not long been settled within the UK.”
His family were told by police to keep all the doors and windows locked shut when they were at home.
In a judgement issued on Thursday, July 22, the High Court threw out his (own) defence.
Court transcripts show that he ‘took on the burden of proving his allegations to be true. He failed. In reality, his evidence fell “woefully short.”
Mr Justice Nicklin ordered Yaxley-Lennon to pay £100,000 in damages to Hijazi, as well as court costs thought to be around £500,000.
His response was, ““I’ve not got any money. I’m bankrupt. I’ve struggled hugely with my own issues these last 12 months … I ain’t got it.”
Yaxley-Lennon, now 38 years old, has spent almost his entire adult life zealously critiquing immigration, targeting Muslims and the Islam faith, in particular.
He has portrayed himself as a journalist, making a habit of “doorstepping” anyone that might question him or his beliefs.
In July of 2020, he announced he was moving his entire family to the Marbella area of Costa del Sol, because of alleged threats in the UK.
None of the allegations were proven true, and he quickly relocated back to the Luton area, where he shared a four-bedroom mansion with his (now estranged) wife.
Yaxley-Lennon’s criminal record (courtesy of TommyRobinsonFacts.com)
2005 – Assault
Assault occasioning actual bodily harm, for which he was sentenced to 12 months’ imprisonment, and assault with intent to resist arrest, for which he received a concurrent term of three months.
2010 – Assaulting a police officer
He was charged with assaulting a police officer during clashes at a poppy burning protest.
2011 – Rooftop protest
Yaxley-Lennon and EDL co-founder Kevin Carroll flew to Zurich to protest on the roof of a FIFA building that England were not allowed to wear poppies on their kit because of FIFA’s political symbol ban. They were fined £3,000 for their troubles.
2011 – Assault
Convicted of assault for an attack at an EDL march in Blackburn.
2011 – Riot
Guilty of leading a brawl that included 100 Luton Town football fans into a fight with Newport County fans. Fans were heard chanting ‘EDL till I die.’ He was given a suspended 12-month prison sentence and banned from Luton football matches for 3 years.
2013 – Identity Fraud
‘Robinson’ was jailed for 10 months for travelling to the USA on his friend’s passport. He admitted the charge of possession of a false identity document with improper intention. The passport Robinson used was under the name of Andrew McMaster. Yaxley-Lennon has also used the name Wayne King in the past.
2014 – Mortgage Fraud
Yaxley-Lennon was sentenced to prison for 18 months for committing mortgage fraud with the crime dating back to 2009. After pleading guilty in November 2013 to committing £160,000 worth of mortgage fraud Robinson was sentenced at St Albans Crown Court.
2017 – Contempt of Court #1
He was given a 3 month suspended sentence after he admitted a contempt of court charge for attempting to photograph a juvenile defendant in a court case whilst having no right to do so. Court security had told Robinson not to film in and around the court as it would lead to his arrest.
2018 – Contempt of Court #2
‘Robinson’ was given a 13-month sentence for contempt of court. He was arrested after Facebook live streaming outside Leeds Crown Court for an hour despite there being reporting restrictions on the case. Because he had a suspended sentence for the same crime the judge sentenced Robinson to 13 months in prison. Robinson pleaded guilty but was later released on bail after winning an appeal.
2020 – Worldwide Football Ban
Following violence at an England game in Portugal, Yaxley-Lennon was banned from attending football matches around the world for four years.
– Far-right activist ‘Tommy Robinson’ banned from attending football matches GLOBALLY after violence in Portugal
– Far right leader Tommy Robinson flees England to set up new life as immigrant in Spain