BNP publicity chief arrested for threats to kill Griffin

By politics.co.uk staff

Mark Collett, a senior official of the BNP, has been arrested for making threats to kill party leader Nick Griffin.

Mr Collett, 29, the party’s head of publicity, was detained by police last week after Mr Griffin and other party members spoke to police, making allegations about a plot to kill him.

He has now been stripped of his position in the party, but was lined up to stand in the Sheffield Brightside seat currently held by former home secretary David Blunkett.

A memo to BNP members last week said the party’s security team had been investigating “alleged financial irregularities” and details of leaks to the internet of sensitive party information.

It went on: “As a result of this investigation, a very serious matter has been uncovered. Earlier this week police were made aware of serious allegations potentially affecting the personal safety of party chairman Nick Griffin MEP and senior management/fundraising consultant James Dowson.

“Formal statements have now been made to the police, including by Mr Griffin.”

Although the BNP said it could not discuss criminal matters, it added: “We are able to say that Mark Collett was conspiring with a small clique of other party officials to launch a ‘palace coup’ against our twice democratically elected party leader.”

A spokesman for Humberside police said: “A 29-year-old man was arrested on suspicion of making threats to kill. The investigation was initiated as a result of a complaint by the members of the BNP.”

Mr Collett has been released on bail pending further inquiries.

Nobody from the BNP was available to comment.

Mr Griffin is due to stand in the general election in Margaret Hodge’s constituency of Barking in east London and is already MEP for north-west England.