The neo-Nazi terrorist who brutally murdered UK Parliament member Jo Cox has received a life sentence. Thomas Mair attacked Cox, repeatedly shooting and stabbing her, in June during the lead up to the country’s Brexit referendum vote.
The Guardian reports how Mr. Justice Wilkie declared that Mair would serve an entire life sentence due to the “exceptional seriousness” of the attack. Eyewitness statements indicated that he shouted, “Britain first!” while brandishing a makeshift gun and stabbing Cox. Police also dug into Mair’s internet activity and combed through his personal library, which revealed an obsession with white supremacy, Nazis, and apartheid-era South Africa. Wilkie spoke directly to Mair while denouncing his ideology in court:
Mr Justice Wilkie refused a request from Mair for an opportunity to address the court, saying he had already plenty of chances to explain himself, and had not done so.
Cox, the judge told Mair, was not only a “passionate, open-hearted, inclusive and generous” person, but a true patriot. He, on the other hand “affected patriotism” and admired the Nazis. “It is evident from your internet searches that your inspiration is not love of country, it is an admiration for Nazis and similar anti-democratic white supremacist creeds,” Wilkie said.
Mair was also found guilty of grievous bodily harm for stabbing a passerby who tried to help Cox in the aftermath, and the jury took 90 minutes to arrive at their verdicts. The Guardian notes that prosecutors privately acknowledged how the contentious atmosphere of the Brexit campaign may have contributed to the timing of Mair’s crime, but “this played no part in their case. There was no need to refer to the referendum in order to establish his guilt.” The jury was instructed to focus on Mair’s actions during deliberations.
(Via The Guardian)