James Goddard: UK ‘yellow vest’ protester admits harassment of pro-Remain MP Anna Soubry

Activist pleads guilty to racially aggravated offence after telling police officer: ‘You ain’t even f***ing British’

Brexit protesters shout traitor and Hitler jibes at Anna Soubry as she walks down street

The UK “yellow vest” protester James Goddard has admitted harassing pro-Remain MP Anna Soubry after calling her a “Nazi” outside parliament.

Goddard also pleaded guilty to a racially aggravated offence against a police officer during protests in London, where he shouted: “You ain’t even f***ing British.”

The 30-year-old admitted the offences at Westminster Magistrates’ Court on Friday, following a series of hearings that were disrupted by his supporters.

The admissions came after he was fined for assaulting a news photographer in a separate incident in Manchester.

Goddard was a prominent figure in pro-Brexit protests that were inspired by the French yellow vests’ tactics, and started in London late last year.

On 19 December, Goddard filmed himself following and verbally abusing Ms Soubry outside the Houses of Parliament.

“You are a traitor, you are a disgrace,” he shouted. “You are on the side of Adolf Hitler.”

The court heard that Ms Soubry, who later defected from the Conservatives to join Change UK, was called a “Nazi, traitor and scum”.

He also abused Ms Soubry in another incident outside of parliament on 7 January.

As the MP conducted media interviews, Goddard and other protesters could be heard chanting: “Soubry is a liar, Soubry is a Nazi.”

“I do object to being called a Nazi, actually,” Ms Soubry told the interviewer.

“This is astonishing. This is what has happened to our country. But let’s try and move on and be positive about things.”

Footage played to the court showed Goddard, fellow defendant Brian Phillips and others surrounding and following the MP as she made her way into parliament.

In a victim impact statement read in court, Ms Soubry said: “I was really intimidated, and I was very shaken by what happened, however, I couldn’t show it on camera.

“I have developed a mechanism for cutting off large parts of my emotions. I was disorientated, I felt intimidated and harassed.”

James Goddard leaving Westminster Magistrates’ Court on 19 July (PA)

Goddard originally denied one count of harassment without violence over the incident, but pleaded guilty to using threatening words or behaviour with intent to cause harassment, alarm or distress on Friday.

He also admitted a racially aggravated public order offence against a Metropolitan Police officer who responded to “yellow vest” protests on the same day.

Footage showed the activist gesturing at officers, shouting: “Every f***ing one of you are fair game – you want a war, I’ll give you a war. You want it? It’s on, every Saturday. You are fair game.”

When PC Mindaugas Sciukas responded “I’m not deaf, there’s no need to shout at me”, Goddard shouted: “You ain’t even f***ing British.”

Goddard, of Timperley in Altrincham, was thrown out of court during a case management hearing last month after interrupting the judge.

Another hearing at Westminster Magistrates’ Court in March descended into chaos as his supporters heckled journalists and the judge, with some entering the dock.

Fellow “yellow vest” 55-year-old Phillips, of Erith in southeast London, also admitted harassing Ms Soubry on 7 January.

The pair were released on bail ahead of sentencing on Monday.

Chief magistrate Emma Arbuthnot indicated that neither would receive an immediate custodial sentence.

Yellow vest protesters blocking Westminster Bridge in March 

In a message to his followers later on Friday, Goddard wrote: “I feel like a coward, but it was the only way to avoid prison, I promise you all that I’m not going to let them win ...f*** British justice!”

Ms Soubry called their behaviour “wrong and unjustified”.

“Everyone is entitled to go about their lawful business,” she said in a statement following the hearing.

“In a democracy people have a right to peaceful lawful protest. No one has the right to intimidate and abuse anyone.

“I am particularly pleased justice has been done in relation to the police officer. Racist abuse is deplorable and should never be tolerated.”

Earlier this year, The Independent revealed how the anti-EU protester once lived in Spain.

Goddard took advantage of the freedom of movement offered by what he now calls a “federal European superstate” to live and work in the country.

The self-declared “British patriot” also voiced his wish to move to the US and “get off this crazy rock full of liberal arseholes”.

Goddard had previously been a peripheral figure in the far right, speaking at Tommy Robinson support rallies and getting into shouting matches at Speakers’ Corner in Hyde Park.

Since launching the UK “yellow vests”, he has seen his Facebook, Twitter and PayPal accounts deleted.

Additional reporting by PA

Register for free to continue reading

Registration is a free and easy way to support our truly independent journalism

By registering, you will also enjoy limited access to Premium articles, exclusive newsletters, commenting, and virtual events with our leading journalists

Please enter a valid email
Please enter a valid email
Must be at least 6 characters, include an upper and lower case character and a number
Must be at least 6 characters, include an upper and lower case character and a number
Must be at least 6 characters, include an upper and lower case character and a number
Please enter your first name
Special characters aren’t allowed
Please enter a name between 1 and 40 characters
Please enter your last name
Special characters aren’t allowed
Please enter a name between 1 and 40 characters
You must be over 18 years old to register
You must be over 18 years old to register
Opt-out-policy
You can opt-out at any time by signing in to your account to manage your preferences. Each email has a link to unsubscribe.

By clicking ‘Create my account’ you confirm that your data has been entered correctly and you have read and agree to our Terms of use, Cookie policy and Privacy notice.

This site is protected by reCAPTCHA and the Google Privacy policy and Terms of service apply.

Already have an account? sign in

By clicking ‘Register’ you confirm that your data has been entered correctly and you have read and agree to our Terms of use, Cookie policy and Privacy notice.

This site is protected by reCAPTCHA and the Google Privacy policy and Terms of service apply.

Register for free to continue reading

Registration is a free and easy way to support our truly independent journalism

By registering, you will also enjoy limited access to Premium articles, exclusive newsletters, commenting, and virtual events with our leading journalists

Already have an account? sign in

By clicking ‘Register’ you confirm that your data has been entered correctly and you have read and agree to our Terms of use, Cookie policy and Privacy notice.

This site is protected by reCAPTCHA and the Google Privacy policy and Terms of service apply.

Thank you for registering

Please refresh the page or navigate to another page on the site to be automatically logged inPlease refresh your browser to be logged in