Tory politician is arrested in hate crime probe after sharing video slamming police for wrongful arrest of Christian preacher and defending ‘only black local councillor’ in Northamptonshire suspended for calling Gay Pride ‘a sin’

  • Cllr Stevens stated he was questioned about tweets from his private account

A Conservative councillor was arrested for an alleged hate crime after sharing a video criticising how the police handled a Christian avenue preacher.

Cllr Anthony Stevens, 50, from Wellingborough, Northamptonshire, instructed The Telegraph he was arrested at his residence this month and taken to a police station to be questioned about tweets from his private account.

One tweet shared by Cllr Stevens in May was a video exhibiting how officers had dealt with the arrest of Christian preacher Oluwole Ilisanmi in Southgate, London, in 2019.

The police officer snatched Mr Ilisanmi’s Bible after the preacher was accused of being Islamophobic and Mr Ilisanmi later obtained £2,500 for wrongful arrest.

The video additionally confirmed footage of an officer showing to state {that a} Muslim preacher was permitted to evangelise on a excessive avenue.

Cllrs Stevens and Lawal with coach Ray Revell handing over funds to Wellingborough Boxing Club. The two have been half of efforts to maintain the membership operating

Cllr Stevens, a member of Wellingborough Town Council, stated he was instructed by the officers that the unique tweet he had shared had been posted by a member of far-right political occasion Britain First.

Cllr Stevens stated he was unaware of this and had no concept who the occasion Britain First have been.

He stated he solely shared it as ‘disturbing proof of non secular discrimination in regulation enforcement’.

Police additionally questioned why he had tweeted his assist for fellow Northamptonshire councillor Cllr King Lawal, who has been ‘cancelled’ for speaking about his Christian beliefs regarding LGBT points, in line with Cllr Stevens.

Cllr Lawal, 31, the one black councillor in Northamptonshire, was suspended by his local Conservative group final month, after he responded to pictures of Pride parades organised by LGBT teams.

He wrote: ‘When did satisfaction change into a factor to have a good time. Because of satisfaction, Satan fell as an archangel. Pride is not a advantage however a sin. Those who’ve satisfaction ought to repent of their sins and return to Jesus Christ. He can prevent.’

In July, Cllr Stevens retweeted a petition asking for Cllr Lawal’s Conservative positions to be reinstated, with the message: ‘If you worth free speech please signal and share.’

Police arresting Oluwole Ilisanmi. An officer snatched Mr Ilisanmi’s Bible after the preacher was accused of being Islamophobic and he later obtained £2,500 for wrongful arrest

He stated officers confirmed him his tweets regarding Cllr Lawal and requested him why he supported the petition.

Cllr Stevens stated he replied that he is a ‘free speech absolutist’ and that he believes folks have a proper to precise their beliefs, even when he doesn’t agree with them.

Cllr Stevens stated he was then requested if he agreed with Cllr Lawal’s preliminary tweet that Pride is sinful, together with LGBT occasions.

He stated he responded by saying that ‘it didn’t matter whether or not he agreed with what he stated or not, he believed he had the appropriate to say it with out having his life torn aside’.

The police have been additionally inquisitive about a tweet, shared by Cllr Stevens on his account of 76 followers, that confirmed a video of a person burning a replica of the Koran.

Cllr Stevens stated his submit was in line together with his view that he agreed that burning a replica of the Koran was half of an individual’s ‘proper to free speech in a free society’.

Cllr Stevens stated he understood {that a} local Labour Party member had reported him to the police.

He was knowledgeable that he was beneath arrest for a public order offence beneath part 19 of the Public Order Act 1986.

The police stated he was suspected of handing out written materials to impress racial hatred.

Cllr Stevens has been launched on bail.

The Christian Legal Centre is lending its assist and he plans to make a grievance to the Independent Office for Police Conduct.

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