Rupert Murdoch foam protester charged with public order offence

Diana Pilkington
Sunday 23 October 2011 03:11

The protester accused of throwing a paper plate of shaving foam at Rupert Murdoch as he gave evidence to MPs was charged today with a public order offence.

Jonathan May-Bowles, 26, of Edinburgh Gardens, Windsor, was bailed to appear before City of Westminster Magistrates Court next Friday, July 29.

He is charged with behaviour causing harassment, alarm or distress in a public place under Section 5 of the Public Order Act, Scotland Yard said.

May-Bowles, who goes by the name Jonnie Marbles, was last night suspended from the Labour Party.

The incident occurred as Mr Murdoch addressed the Commons Culture, Media and Sport Committee.

A man who had been sitting at the back of the Wilson Room in Portcullis House in Westminster listening to Mr Murdoch and his son James give evidence, was seen to get up and walk around the left side of the packed room to get to where the media mogul was sitting.

He threw a paper plate with white foam piled on top at Mr Murdoch's face, leaving him soaking.

The media mogul's wife Wendi Deng leapt to her husband's defence, first pushing the attacker away and then throwing the plate at him as he was led away by police.

The incident was condemned by audience members and MPs including Commons Speaker John Bercow.