Thursday, 18 Apr 2024

Brexiteer admits assaulting Jeremy Corbyn after hitting him with egg

Brexiteer, 31, who yelled ‘respect the vote’ and hurled an egg at Jeremy Corbyn is jailed for 28 days after leaving Labour leader’s wife ‘stressed and distressed’ by assault

  • John Murphy from south-west London was jailed today after admitting assault
  • The 31-year-old smacked Jeremy Corbyn with an egg during a charity meeting
  • Was heard shouting ‘respect the vote’ repeatedly while he was being restrained  
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John Murphy (pictured outside court today) egged Jeremy Corbyn while shouting ‘respect the vote’ during a meeting in Islington

A Brexit supporter who egged Jeremy Corbyn while yelling ‘respect the vote’ has been jailed for 28 days.

John Murphy, 31, admitted assault after smacking the Labour leader with an egg after he visited a mosque in his Islington North constituency.

Mr Corbyn said the attack left his wife, who was also present, ‘stressed and distressed’.

He added that it prompted his team to increase security measures, Westminster Magistrates’ Court heard today.

Murphy, of Whetstone, north-west London, admitted the assault this morning. 

He was warned by Chief Magistrate Emma Arbuthnot that he may be jailed for assault by beating in order to send a clear message that ‘attacks on MPs must stop’. This afternoon he was jailed for 28 days. 

Prosecutor Kevin Christie said Mr Corbyn was with Labour shadow home secretary Diane Abbott at the Muslim Welfare Centre in north London after visiting the Finsbury Park Mosque on March 3.

Mr Corbyn took off his shoes and sat down next to his wife Laura Alvarez and a group of people who seemed to be ‘in great spirits’.

‘Suddenly, he felt a strike to the right side of his forehead and then realised someone had reached over his right shoulder and struck him,’ Mr Christie said. ‘As he was struck he heard a male voice shouting ‘respect the vote’.’




Jeremy Corbyn (left, leaving his house in the days after the attack and, right, during his visit) had an egg smashed against his head 

Mr Corbyn had left the room to wash himself when he realised he had been struck by an egg. Murphy continued to shout ‘respect the vote’ while being restrained by staff.

Mr Corbyn, who was largely uninjured but left with a red mark, noted Murphy’s face was ‘contorted’ with rage and he appeared ‘very aggressive’.

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Mr Corbyn described the effects of the assault, which happened after he visited a mosque in his Islington North constituency on March 3, in a victim impact statement.

He said he ‘was very shocked and surprised’ by the ‘completely unprovoked and threatening’ assault.


Corbyn said the attack left him feeling stressed and distressed 

‘My wife Laura was sitting beside me and often feels very stressed on my behalf and became extremely distressed at this event,’ he added.

‘She has been in a sense of shock for the past few days after this.’

Following the attack, he said, the Labour leader increased his security and added the incident had left his family ‘very stressed and distressed’. 

Remain-supporting politicians have spoken about heightened tensions turning into abuse and violence, with independent MP Anna Soubry saying she has been targeted by ‘very, very serious’ death threats.

Labour’s Lloyd Russell-Moyle said a man shouting ‘traitors’ grappled with him and grabbed his glasses on the streets of Brighton in an attempted assault.

Prime Minister Theresa May has faced heavy criticism from MPs, who accused her of whipping up tensions and putting them at risk of physical attack after she blamed them for delaying Brexit in a Downing Street speech.

The attack on Corbyn came about a week after the party announced it would support a second referendum.

Ms Arbuthnot warned she is considering a short prison sentence for Murphy, who had been equipped with four further eggs.

‘This is a public servant and attacks on MPs must stop. The message must go out – this must stop,’ she said.

Malik Aldeiri, defending, said Mr Corbyn’s statement was ‘slightly over egged in the sense that Mr Corbyn himself hasn’t suffered any impact’, with the main concerns being from his family. Murphy was bailed until later in the day when he may be sentenced. 

Jeremy Corbyn’s victim statement: 


Jeremy Corbyn (pictured in the days after he was egged) was targeted while visiting the Muslim Welfare Centre

Mr Corbyn described the effects of the assault, which happened after he visited a mosque in his Islington North constituency on March 3, in a victim impact statement.

Here is the statement as read to the court: ‘I was very shocked and surprised when the assault occurred as I have always felt safe and secure at the Muslim Welfare House.

‘The assault was completely unprovoked and threatening. My wife Laura was sitting beside me and often feels very stressed on my behalf and became extremely distressed at this event.

‘She has been in a sense of shock for the past few days after this. Colleagues present including Diane Abbott MP and Councillor Richard Watts witnessed the events and were very shocked by it.

‘Immediate support from those at the Muslim Welfare House was very much appreciated.

‘Since then I have made the decision with my office and colleagues about my own security and, whilst I’m adamant to make sure I am able to interact with people as I always have, I now have to be more cautious.

‘I feel these kind of attacks drive a wedge between elected representatives and those who elect them in the first place. We are now reviewing and increasing my security protection.

‘Many friends and colleagues have been in touch since the incident and have also told me how distressed they are by the situation, as has Jack McKenna who was with me at the time and safely apprehended the suspect.

‘My three sons, who weren’t present, heard about the incident very quickly on social media. They were very stressed and distressed by the assault and were very worried for my safety.

‘I have three members of staff in my constituency office and a much larger number in my Westminster office, all of whom are very hard working.

‘However, since this incident they have felt a heightened sense of stress and it’s also very unfair for them because they are just trying to do their job.

‘Whilst in my very public role it’s often very painful to see my wife, my sons and wider family suffer stress because of my role and because of this attack on me.

‘It impacts on our lives but I’m determined that I will carry on with my public role and ensure that I’m never cut off from the people I represent.’

 

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