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Britain First leader Paul Golding admits attacking deputy Jayda Fransen in secret recording

But, he says in audio, he's 'only' assaulted her and one other woman in his life

Colin Drury
Wednesday 29 May 2019 11:15 BST
Britain First's Paul Golding admits attacking deputy Jayda Fransen in secret recording

The male leader of the far-right group Britain First has been secretly recorded admitting to attacking his female former deputy.

Paul Golding is heard saying he assaulted both Jayda Fransen and another woman in the audio obtained by the BBC.

Ms Fransen – who was in a relationship with the 37-year-old for a period – has since confirmed the allegations are true.

She said the violence continued for roughly four-and-a-half-years until she quit the group at the start of 2019.

The revelations were made as part of an investigation into Britain’s First increased activity in Northern Ireland.

Over the last 18 months, the group has targeted support in the province and has set up its headquarters in Belfast.

In the secret recordings – made in December 2015 but first aired on Tuesday night – Ms Fransen, 33, repeatedly challenges Mr Golding about the fact he has assaulted her. He never contradicts her claims.

In one excerpt, the pair discuss an attempted assault that Mr Golding had apparently carried out on Ms Fransen earlier that day.

Mr Golding says: "What happened this weren't innocent."

Ms Fransen replies: "I didn't come near you. You tried to come at me, tried to hit me, you said you were going to kill me and threw a bottle of drink at my face."

Mr Golding says: "Driving someone mentally crazy is just as bad as physical."

Ms Fransen asks if he said the same thing to another woman who it is suggested he used to physically hit.

Seconds later, Mr Golding is heard saying: “The only girls I lay a finger on in my life is [name of woman withheld] and you."

The investigation – aired on the corporation’s Spotlight current affairs show – also included CCTV footage of Mr Golding fighting with a former Britain First member in a Belfast street in December.

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Both Mr Golding and Ms Fransen were convicted for hate crimes last year. He was jailed for 18 weeks, while she received a 36-week sentence.

The man himself declined to comment but told the programme: "I have been advised to warn you that any libel or defamation will result in legal proceedings."

The Independent has contacted Britain First for comment.

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