UKIP candidate forwarded racist e-mail ranting against the family of murdered Stephen Lawrence
- Ex-UKIP candidate John White sent racist diatribe to Tory MP Peter Bluff
- He stood for the UKIP party in mid-Worcestershire in 2010
- Was visited by police a fortnight ago after he had sent the e-mail
A Tory MP called in the police after his UKIP opponent sent him a grotesque diatribe comparing the family of murdered Stephen Lawrence to apes.
Tory MP Peter Luff has revealed that John White, who stood for UKIP in Mid-Worcestershire at the 2010 General Election, emailed Mr Luff to ask if it was ‘a joke’ that Baroness Lawrence had received a peerage.
Mr White attached a tirade by a racist internet commentator, who wrote that the peerage made him ‘ashamed to be British’.
Shockingly, the commentator – who called himself ‘Pete Lucas’ – goes on to say: ‘Mrs Lawrence should be elevated higher than the indigenous Brit, which she would normally be, due to the preference of her species for dwelling in high places’ – seemingly a reference to monkeys.
‘Pete’ goes on to describe the peerage as ‘treason’ and says this ‘latest ludicrous elevation of an ethnic-minority woman to baroness on the grounds of her being black with the distinction of having had a son murdered (sic) by white-men, is a crass injustice’.
Sic is a Latin term used to highlight an apparent mistake – indicating that ‘Pete’ does not believe that Stephen’s death counted as murder.
After Mr Luff told Mr White that he was ‘truly appalled’ by the email, an unapologetic Mr White replied that his nephew had been murdered ‘by some foreigner’ and claimed that the case remained ‘unsolved’ because the victim’s mother was ‘a white British citizen’.
Mr Luff referred the email exchange to the police – who concluded that although the content was ‘deeply unpleasant’ it did not constitute a crime.
Last night Mr White, 71, confirmed he had been visited by West Mercia police a fortnight ago over the email.
He said: ‘I told them that I had forwarded the email and still agreed with it.
‘I’m not frightened to speak and say what other people are too frightened to say. I’m not racist. I have black and Polish friends but I think it’s wrong that people play the race card just to prove a point.
‘The police wanted to know who Pete Lucas was but I told them I had no idea and they said the case was closed as far as I was concerned.
‘I don’t understand why the Stephen Lawrence case is still going on. It’s been 21 years and it’s time everyone moved on. That’s why I sent it. I still agree with it.’
Mr White claimed he didn’t agree with the ‘monkey’ reference, but still did not regret sending the email. He added that he had let his UKIP membership ‘lapse’ a couple of years ago.
The row comes just days after a damning report revealed the full extent of corruption by officers investigating Stephen’s death, including a police cover-up and a ‘spying operation’ on the grieving family by an undercover unit.
Stephen, 18, was stabbed to death by a group of up to six white youths in an unprovoked racist attack at a bus stop in Eltham, South-East London, on April 22, 1993.
Baroness Lawrence fought back tears in the House of Lords last week as she reacted to the report by barrister Mark Ellison QC.
Last night, a UKIP spokesman said that Mr White was no longer a member of the party.
He added: ‘UKIP abhors racism and takes all allegations of racism extremely seriously.
‘John White left UKIP in 2012 after becoming unhappy about the direction of the party.’
Mr White, who won more than 3,000 votes at the last Election, was a member of the Labour Party for 33 years, switching to UKIP when Gordon Brown became Labour leader.
Last night Mr Luff told The Mail on Sunday: ‘One only has to see the dignity with which Lady Lawrence has reacted to this week’s revelations to realise how much she deserved her place in the Lords.
‘This exposes UKIP for the narrow-minded bigots they really are.’
UKIP leader Nigel Farage has battled to contain a string of revelations about the views held by some of his candidates.
Last week he pledged to weed out ‘eccentric’ candidates who have ‘skeletons in their cupboards’, and said everyone who wanted to stand as an MP or an MEP would have to sign a charter to prove they are not extremists.
As a result all new candidates now have to make a written declaration that they have ‘never engaged in, advocated or condoned racist, violent, criminal or anti- democratic activity’.