United Kingdom

Coronavirus UK: Piers Corbyn leads demonstration against the 10pm curfew

Jeremy Corbyn's brother Piers tonight defied Covid-19 restrictions as he led another anti-lockdown rally in London after appearing at court charged with flouting coronavirus rules.

Scores of demonstrators gathered outside Camden Town Tube station at around 10.30pm playing music, carrying megaphones and holding banners calling for an end to shutdown measures.

Corbyn, the older brother of the former Labour Party leader, blew fire and juggled at the event as he called on protesters to 'bring the music, bring the noise and drink' on the street.

His decision to organise yet another anti-lockdown protest comes after a court heard how the Metropolitan Police had 'specifically targeted' Corbyn at a Hyde Park demo on May 30.

The conspiracy theorist was later fined £10,000 for organising a huge anti-lockdown rally at Trafalgar Square in the UK capital, which was attended by more than 10,000 demonstrators.

Appearing outside Westminster Magistrates' Court yesterday, Corbyn said: 'Just to let you know that tonight, in a place as yet unrealised, but if you go on Twitter you'll find out. 

'We're going to have another drink against the curfew, where allegedly someone's going to be blowing fire.' 

Corbyn last appeared at a 'drink against the curfew' on October 17, when he shook hands with revellers, blasted the Government and claimed 'there's no such thing as a coronavirus'. 

Jeremy Corbyn's brother Piers tonight attended an anti-lockdown rally in Camden Town after appearing in court

The former Labour Party leader's brother organised an anti-lockdown rally for outside the north London Tube station

Corbyn then blew fire to entertain the crowd as he called on protesters to 'bring the music, bring the noise and drink'

Scores of protesters gathered on the street outside Camden Town Tube station tonight to party with Piers Corbyn

Protesters took drinks with them in defiance of the 10pm curfew while musicians played music to entertain the revellers

Corbyn's appearance comes after a court heard how police 'specifically targeted' him at a Hyde Park demo on May 30

His lawyer told court yesterday that Corbyn was singled out by authorities for breaking Covid-19 regulations during a lockdown protest because of his political beliefs. 

Ben Cooper QC suggested it was unfair that the conspiracy theorist was arrested on May 30 while no arrests were made for breaches of lockdown restrictions at a Black Lives Matter protest taking place on the same day.

Representing the former Labour leader's brother, the barrister said: 'We see that these are incidents in which there was an awareness of the politics of protesters by police.

'So when we adduce that the BLM protest on the same date resulted in no arrests, notwithstanding similar breaches had taken place, this demonstrates that there is a politicisation in the enforcement of the regulations by choosing to permit one set of demonstrators to protest while discriminating against different groups on the same day.That is an example of the police entering the political arena impermissibly.'

He added that some police evidence highlighted officers' awareness of who Corbyn was, going against other evidence said to suggest approaching Corbyn was unplanned.

Referring to a log of police activities, named Silver Log, set to be used as evidence in the trial, he added: 'The Superintendent in charge of Silver Log showed specific awareness of Mr Piers Corbyn - specifically described as Jeremy Corbyn's brother in the entry on his activities - and therefore he was clearly very much on the radar of the officer responsible for the policing of these matters. 

'That is contrary to subsequent evidence of something which effectively suggests there was an element of surprise in confronting Mr Corbyn.'

Corbyn, of Southwark, denies two counts of participating in a gathering in public of more than two people in England during the coronavirus emergency period relating to protests on May 16 and 30. 

Scores of protesters gathered on the street outside Camden Town Tube station tonight to party with Piers Corbyn

Corbyn then blew fire to entertain the crowd as he called on protesters to 'bring the music, bring the noise and drink'

Jeremy Corbyn's brother Piers tonight attended an anti-lockdown rally in Camden Town after appearing in court

Police vans were seen near the anti-lockdown demo by Camden Town station to enforce compliance with Covid-19 rules

A protester was seen writing anti-lockdown slogans in chalk on the pavement outside Camden Town Tube station tonight

The trial was delayed when a judge was told the CPS lawyers had not had time to go over police records which could be used as evidence because they were only uploaded to a document sharing system this week.

The court also heard that Corbyn's defence lawyers were late in delivering statements.

Judge Sam Coozee said: 'These delays are abhorrent. If I have to adjourn the trial because of outstanding disclosure I will have to consider the issue of costs.'

Corbyn, who wore a dark blue shirt and tie, was applauded as he arrived at the court, and was supported in the at-capacity public gallery by around 10 people who handed out flyers to the press. 

The public gallery was at full capacity while uniformed police stood at the door of the court room to stop yet more fans and associates from entering the court room so it could comply with social distancing regulations. 

During recesses in the hearing, the amateur weather forecaster went into the public gallery, ignoring social distancing rules. He appeared to nod off and was told off after his mobile phone went off three times in court.

A new trial date has now been set for November 27 at the same court.

Before the hearing began Piers Corbyn told reporters outside court he would refuse to pay a fine if found guilty.

He added: 'If we win today, this will set a precedent for all other people arrested under the Covid regulations.  

'If we lose, we will appeal. Whatever happens, if they impose a fine, I will not pay the fine. I'm not going to pay any fines for these anti-just, illegal laws.' 

A second man, Jeffrey Wyatt, 56, of Watery Lane, Milton Keynes, Bucks, was due to stand trial alongside Corbyn after being arrested at Speakers Corner during the same incident on May 16. 

Last Saturday night, after being turfed out of pubs and bars at 10pm, crowds spilled on to the streets of Soho where anti-lockdown demonstrators had gathered, including Piers Corbyn who said: 'We're here to drink against curfew'

The former weatherman was applauded by around a dozen supporters as he arrived at Westminster Magistrates' Court for his trial over allegedly breaking coronavirus restrictions by attending public gatherings in Hyde Park

Anti-lockdown demonstrators outside Westminster Magistrates' Court, London, as Piers Corbyn, brother of former Labour leader Jeremy Corbyn, is on trial over anti-lockdown protests at Hyde Park

Addressing District Judge Goozee, Wyatt appeared to make reference to a fringe belief that all British People were declared dead at sea by the obscure Cestui Que Vie Act 1666, which conspiracy theorists believe left everyone as a 'legal fiction.'

The act was actually designed to allow landlords to recover what was owed to them by tenants who went missing overseas for seven years or more by declaring them dead.

The act gave those declared dead the power to regain their estate and claim damages if they returned alive.

He said: 'I am here in peace to clarify matters because I do not recognise the jurisdiction of this court.

'I don't recognise the jurisdiction of this court. I think this is very important. I am here to clarify the process of the legal action that Jeffrey Wyatt is facing and I'm here as the living man Jeffrey Wyatt.'

He added that he did 'own the legal fiction that is Jeffrey Wyatt', but he appeared before the court as the 'living man' of the same name.'

He told the court he intended to call a John Smith, who he described as an expert on common law, as a witness.

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