|It seems one trial wasn't enough for the BNP. A retrial is going to be held into allegations of inciting racial hatred.|
THE leader of the British National Party walked free from court yesterday after being cleared of seeking to incite racial hatred, but prosecutors said immediately that he and another member of the hard-right party would face a retrial.
Nick Griffin said that he felt “absolutely vindicated” after a jury decided that his speech, made during the run-up to the 2004 local elections and secretly filmed by a reporter, was not abusive or insulting to Asian people.
Mark Collett, a senior member of the BNP, was also acquitted of race-hate charges triggered by two speeches that he had made to party supporters in West Yorkshire, one of which compared asylumseekers with cockroaches.
The jury at Leeds Crown Court was unable to reach a verdict on further charges in relation to a second speech by Mr Griffin, 46, and two more speeches by Mr Collett, 25. The Crown Prosecution Service said that the two men would be retried on the outstanding charges — a decision which surprised several observers, given the success with which Mr Griffin managed to turn the case into a trial of the Islamic religion.