Saturday, 26 October 2013

Who is behind "missing girl" racist hoax?

From the Croydon Advertiser by Rachel Millard: 

Race hate group: 'Croydon random target for missing girl hoax'

THE race hate group behind a sick social media hoax that a girl had been abducted by an “Asian grooming gang” have admitted they targeted Croydon completely at random.

A poster, circulated to thousands of people on Facebook and other social networking sites, appealed for the safe return of a girl named Amy Hamilton, "believed to have been kidnapped by an Asian grooming gang".

It continued: "She is six years old and was last seen in the Croydon area of London, wearing a pink top and blue jeans."

But police confirmed on Wednesday no such child was missing and the message was a fake.The poster was the work of the far-right group Britons against Left-Wing Extremism (Bale).

Steven Sodholmy, editor of the Daily Bale blog, said in an e-mail the poster was "not a hoax", adding: "The poster and the 20,000 that shared it on Facebook were informed about the harsh reality of Asian grooming gangs that have been operating in the Croydon area of London now for some time."

But pressed to name any instances of "Asian grooming gangs" in the area, he admitted: 

Croydon is a very specific area we chose but it is well-known that these gangs operate all over the United Kingdom.

Raising awareness is key here and Croydon is an area that we chose at random via a map.
After the hoax was first highlighted by the Advertiser the Daily Bale deactivated its Twitter and Facebook page.

Vidhi Mohan, Croydon Council's cabinet member for communities, said he did not think the peddling of racist stereotypes would be accepted in the borough.

He said: "I think in Croydon it is recognised that our community relationships are excellent. Nobody wants to be stereotyped but at the same time I think our communities are strong and people don't fall for these things."

Supt Rob Atkin, of Croydon police, said: 
These type of hoax appeals are, at best, extremely unhelpful and distasteful and can potentially divert public attention away from genuine appeals.

We rely on the support of the public and media to help us when we release appeals to find our most vulnerable missing people.

The support we get for these appeals is fantastic, but these hoaxes can really damage the effectiveness of genuine appeals.
The poster included a phone number which led callers to an insurance company, which told the Advertiser it had no connection with the hoaxers and was taking steps to have its number removed.

A photograph said to be of Amy Hamilton on the poster appeared to have been taken from an artist's Flickr page.

Supt Atkin said: "If in doubt check with police through our website or Twitter account, or the Missing Persons charity website to see if an appeal is genuine."


So who is this Steven Sodholmy, editor of the BALE, who is responsible for spreading such vile rumours?  

According to blogger Glenn Miller, and to Anti Fascists Online, Sodholmy is the pseudonym of Joshua Bonehill or Joshua Bonehill-Paine. 

Glenn Miller provided this photograph: 

If these allegations are true, then baby-faced racist Bonehill has some explaining to do.

Why did he take the photograph of a little girl from an artist's web page?   Why did he concoct such a miserable lie about a missing girl and blame "Asian grooming gangs"?  And why then put it on a website that is called Britons Against Left-wing Extremism?  

By this stupid hoax Bonehill became a poster boy for the extreme far right.

No comments:

Post a Comment