‘Yellow vest’ protester charged with harassment after Anna Soubry incident

Posted On: 
19th February 2019

A protester has been charged with harassment after an incident involving Conservative MP Anna Soubry outside Parliament last month.

James Goddard speaking through a megaphone outside Parliament in January
PA Images

The Crown Prosecution Service (CPS) said James Goddard had also been charged with two public order offences against a police officer.

The 29-year-old was arrested last month on suspicion of a public order offence, days after a confrontation involving the Remain-supporting MP outside parliament.

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He will appear at Westminster Magistrates' Court on 19 March.

Mr Goddard stands accused of harassment, between December 18 2018 and January 8 2019, contrary to section 2 of the Protection from Harassment Act 1997.

He is also charged with causing racially aggravated harassment, alarm or distress on January 7, contrary to the Crime and Disorder Act 1998.

And he is charged with causing harassment, alarm or distress on January 7, contrary to section 5 of the Public Order Act 1986.

A CPS spokesperson said: “On 5 February, the CPS received a file of evidence from the Metropolitan Police relating to two incidents outside Parliament on 19 December and 7 January involving an MP.

“Following a review of the evidence, the CPS has authorised the police to charge James Goddard, 29, with harassment. He is also charged with two public order offences against a police officer.”

Ms Soubry was branded a “Nazi” by protesters in January while she was being interviewed on television.

She was later confronted by the same group of men who called her a “fascist” as she walked back into the Houses of Parliament.

The Broxtowe MP tweeted at the time: “Apparently MPs & politicians are meant to accept it as part of the democratic process.

“I fail to see why journalists and technicians should be subjected to the same abuse & intimidation as the police stand by and do nothing. They tried to stop me getting into Parliament."

Responding to the incident, a spokesman for the Prime Minister said: "The Prime Minister has been very clear that anybody involved in the political process shouldn't be subjected to abuse or harassment.

"They should be free to do their job without fear of intimidation."