Page last updated at 14:55 GMT, Thursday, 26 June 2008 15:55 UK

BNP activist's conviction upheld

A BNP activist who said three illegal immigrants guilty of killings were "scum" has had his conviction upheld.

Andrew Kendall, of Essex, had said he was entitled to put up posters with the details on to promote his party and the description was accurate.

Kendall, 32 and of Westcliff-on-Sea, was found guilty of committing a racially aggravated offence as his activities could distress the public.

His conviction was upheld by the High Court who rejected an appeal.

Kendall was given an 18-month conditional discharge by magistrates who found the posters he put up in Southend High Street in February 2007 were threatening, abusive or insulting and likely to cause harassment, alarm or distress.

Michaila Williams, Kendall's counsel, told the court her client had done no more than to use the sort of words tabloid newspaper reports would have done and the three men in the posters were illegal immigrants

At the appeal hearing the judge, Mr Justice Keith, said it was accurate to say the three men were illegal immigrants, although they had been convicted of manslaughter not murder.

But, Mr Justice Keith added, the magistrates were entitled to find Kendall was aware the posters may have caused alarm or distress.

"It was unquestionably open to the magistrates to conclude that Kendall himself had been aware that the posters were conveying the message that black people were scum because they were the sort of people who came to this country illegally and either committed, or were capable of committing, crimes like murder," he said.

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