As many of you know, I’ve been actively involved in the case of Ben Stimson, the British man tried with terrorism charges for being a member of the people’s militia forces, in Donbass.
Last August, I made a documentary about Ben, from Oldham:
Today, a close contact of Ben’s, who has been helping him, Nicola Moore, wrote to me with an update on Ben’s situation. See here, Nicky’s post about visiting Ben in jail:
And to confirm that Ben knows Nicky, here:
I have a message from Ben Stimson. He apologises for the way his email sounded in September, his head was up his bottom (see below) and he said he appreciates all you have done for him and your support. He said he will always have your back and he hopes to speak to you soon.
Great work by the way you’re very tenacious and dedicated. It’s nice to see someone beating the drum and showing ppl what’s happening in donetsk.
My ability to give Ben my full support had been compromised by Ben’s email of September, and, I felt disloyalty towards me, of which I’ve written here.
However, after Nicky’s words, I forgave Ben, and asked after after him:
He’s ok- especially considering he’s on a terrorist wing with neo Nazis and jihadist being a partly Jewish man this can’t be easy, he’s been denied education and just started to be allowed going to the gym. He’s been denied visits and letters even of his own mp. He also isn’t allowed to ring me as lm classed as a political extremist which is ridiculous.
His hearing is tomorrow morning – the court rejected his plea of innocent in February and so it’s been dropped to one charge- he’s admitting guilt and looking to be out in a few years. He wants to return as well.
I’m off to Strangeways now to see him and he’s in court tomorrow morning at 10.
If he doesn’t there will be a full length trial – and if he’s found guilty he could get over 10 years
I will add that, in no small part due to the treatment of the UK authorities in relation to him, Ben is in a emotionally vulnerable position, and thus susceptible to pressure to plead guilty to something of which he is entirely innocent.
Ben is pleading to:
Article 5(a) of 2006 Terrorism act of engaging in acts of terrorism was dropped, but he plead guilty to 5(b) of facilitating terrorism
One of the charges was dropped
(It carries) Over ten years in prison – he has a top terrorism barrister who’s been coming up from London.
It’s a shocking situation, for many reasons. Ben was stitched up by the BBC, as I filmed here:
The fate of Ben, who never fired in anger, is in stark contrast to the fate of Chris Garrett, the British man who fought, and killed, for the neo-Nazi Azov battalion –
In light of his words, Ben now has my full support. I will be paying close attention to developments tomorrow, and ready to give my full support to Ben, and to what seems set to be a total miscarriage of justice in the UK, and a deeply worrying precedent set.
If Ben is indeed found guilty and sentenced to a prison term, there must be an immediate campaign to free him, and right this manifest injustice.