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A ringleader of an angry far-left mob that shut down a Parliamentary hustings in south east London due to “public safety fears” is a prominent member of the Labour Party, AltNewsMedia can exclusively reveal today.
On Tuesday 12th June, just 48 hours before the Lewisham East by-election, up to 50 hard-left activists descended on a venue in Catford and barricaded the entrance in protest at For Britain Movement leader Anne Marie Waters speaking at the debate. UKIP candidate David Kurten was also abused inside and outside the hustings and video evidence shows members of the public being spat at and attacked with placards by the agitators before police pulled the plug on the event.
In one of the most shocking scenes from the evening, Kurten’s YouTube channel captures a man jostling with people at the entrance to the Salvation Army whilst chanting “Racist scum! Racist scum!”. When a member of the public tries to push his way through the melee to make the start of the debate, the man screeches “Shame on you! Shame on you!” repeatedly and with such intensity that at one point his voice audibly breaks.
As the innocent bystander squeezes past two police officers, the man leans his head to within centimetres of him and screams “Shame on you, you fucking mug!”. As this happens, one police officer raises his finger at the man whilst the other pushes him away to prevent a potential violent, and seemingly unprovoked, flashpoint.
One community leader was passing at the time of the incident and was so shocked by his actions that having watched it back online afterwards, decided to come forward and pass AltNewsMedia information about his identity. He says the man undoubtedly played an instrumental role in police deciding to cancel the event on safety grounds.
Today we can reveal that the aggressive and abusive far-left agitator held back by police as a member of the public tried to get inside the building is 26-year-old William Miles, a Labour Party youth officer in the Perry Vale branch for Lewisham West & Penge. He is also one of two admins on the Lewisham West and Penge CLP Young Labour Group’s closed Facebook page and in April he also became joint campaigns officer for Lewisham Momentum.
The proud “comrade”, who studied English & Creative Writing at the University of Greenwich but now lists himself as unemployed on his own blogsite, is pictured recently with several high-profile Labour Party figures including MP Laura Pidcott and Guardian columnist Owen Jones. AltNewsMedia’s investigation shows that Miles was a key campaigner for one of Labour’s candidates in the by-election, Momentum-backed Sakina Sheikh, who herself has been mired in controversy after Guido Fawkes revealed she had recently shared a platform with radical Imam Shakeel Begg. In 2016 the High Court ruled the extremist preacher from Lewisham Islamic Centre had “clearly promoted and encouraged violence in support of Islam and espoused a series of extremist Islamic positions.”
Previous social media posts display Miles’ thuggish tendencies, listing a new year’s resolution to “Bring down the government. Stay with the trouble” and in September 2017 posting “Pacifist here, desperate for a fight”. When Donald Trump became the 45th President of the United States he tweeted that “a struggle is at hand of a scale we haven’t had in generations” before adding “No excuses now, history is alive.”
Janet Daby, Labour’s eventual by-election winner and now new Lewisham East MP, refused to attend the hustings saying she was reluctant to give Waters the “oxygen of publicity”. But while Daby was absent, leaflets handed out by hard-left agitators boasted support from Lewisham West & Penge Labour Party as well as Lewisham TUC and Lewisham NEU.
The local man, who has asked AltNewsMedia to keep his identity hidden for fear of reprisals, told us: “I believe in a fair, democratic process and was outraged by the actions of some of the Lewisham Labour members. William Miles, obviously a paid-up member of the Labour Party, is clearly seen abusing those trying to enter the hustings through thuggery and inhibiting other people’s rights to participate in the democratic process.
“It is so sad they prevented, through violence and intimidation, political parties from across the spectrum presenting their policies and having them challenged. I find it hugely hypocritical that an active member of the Labour Party, who is involved in assisting his party’s candidates, would prevent other parties and candidates from doing the same. This clearly goes against the fundamental principles of a free and fair election.”
It appears Miles also has links with the violent AntiFa organisation, ‘liking’ a London Antifascists page on Facebook and appearing in a video from May 2017 entitled “Defend Croydon” where he is pictured alongside masked men holding black anarchist flags and getting into several confrontations with the police.
AltNewsMedia contacted Miles, MP Daby and Labour Party HQ about the revelations but none of them had responded to a request for comment at the time of publication.
To read the initial story deconstructing the media bias over the Lewisham East hustings, visit this page.