Tommy Robinson’s prosecution has been referred to the Attorney General because it’s ‘too complex’ to hear at the Old Bailey.
He is accused of contempt of court for live-streaming details of an ongoing child grooming trial on Facebook.
This allegedly could have caused the trial to collapse, costing hundreds of thousands of pounds. The grooming gang was later jailed for a combined 221 years.
Judge Nicholas Hilliard QC, the Recorder of London, told the Old Bailey this morning: “Cross-examination of Mr Yaxley-Lennon would be necessary for a proper examination of the allegations. All the evidence must be rigorously tested.”
It comes after 35-year-old Robinson, real name Stephen Yaxley-Lennon, previously predicted he was ‘100%’ going back to jail after sacking his legal team for reportedly wanting to cut a plea deal with prosecutors.
Judge Hilliard said the case should go to the Attorney General for his consideration after receiving a statement from Robinson on Monday.
The court heard that in the current setting, lawyers would not be able to perform an appropriate cross-examination of the evidence.
“I think it necessary to look at quite a lot of the detail of what Mr Yaxley-Lennon said in the broadcast as to come to the overall picture as to what happened,” the judge said.
“I’m satisfied in the light of the issues as they now appear as they emerged from the statement of yesterday, that cross-examination of Mr Yaxley-Lennon is necessary for a proper and thorough examination and resolution of the case that is in the public interest.”
Robinson was released on bail.
Fans chanted “Oh Tommy Tommy” and blasted klaxons outside the Old Bailey as he walked into court this morning.
The activist was freed from prison in August after three leading judges quashed a contempt of court finding made at Leeds Crown Court.
The appeal judges said Robinson was jailed too quickly back in May – finding himself in the dock just hours after the alleged offence outside Leeds Crown Court.
He was ordered to face a fresh hearing over the contempt of court allegation, which carries a maximum penalty of two years behind bars.
Robinson walked through the chanting crowd to make an address rather than take the easy route from behind the stage.
“We want Tommy out,” they shouted, as supporters filmed him on their phones.
They patted the suited EDL founder on the back and expressed their gratitude.
Robinson told crowds he had scored a victory regardless of whether he is sent back to jail.
“No matter what happens today, I’ve already won,” he said. “Their attempts to silence and stop people having the knowledge of the Muslim rape gangs that are terrorising our nation.
“The entire world is now watching.”
Police manned barricades outside court for the rally.
England and Union flags, as well those for Ukip, were flying as dozens of protesters gathered.