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Former Manchester student and ‘face of BNP Youth’ plotted to murder female Labour MP

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A former Manchester Metropolitan University student and organiser for BNP Youth has pleaded guilty to plotting to murder a Labour MP and a female police officer in a machete attack.

23-year-old Jack Renshaw, who was removed from the university in 2015, admitted to planning the “politically and racially motivated murder” of West Lancashire MP Rosie Cooper in July 2017.

Renshaw also planned to murder Detective Constable Victoria Henderson if she responded to the incident, the Old Bailey heard this afternoon.

He had previously been investigated by police over incitement to racial hatred after calling for the eradication of Jews and saying that Adolf Hitler “didn’t go far enough”.

It is alleged that Renshaw planned his attack after gaining permission from the banned far right group Neo Nazi group National Action, of which he was a member.

Renshaw was on trial alongside National Action leader Christopher Lythgoe, 32, from Warrington, who it is alleged provided permission for the 1st July murder. Lythgoe denies the charge.

The group, which has actively campaigned for student membership, was banned and named as a terror organisation by then Home Secretary Amber Rudd in 2016 after showing support for the murderer of MP Jo Cox.

Garron Helm, 24, of Seaforth, Matthew Hankinson, 24, of Newton-le-Willows, Andrew Clarke, 33, of Warrington, and Michal Trubini, 35, also of Warrington, are also on trial for allegedly being members of National Action. All deny the allegations.

Opening proceedings, Prosecutor Duncan Atkinson QC told the jury that National Action had been on a "campaign of virulent anti-Semitic and homophobic propaganda" since its founding in 2013.

Renshaw was born in Skelmersdale, Lancashire, and had been a member of the English Defence League since the age of 15 before joining the now defunct British National Party (BNP) and meeting its leader Nick Griffin.

As spokesperson for BNP Youth in 2015 he faced a police investigation after calling for the eradication of Jews, including writing on his blog that they should “get the sentence that is deemed appropriate – for me that is hanging.”

He will be sentenced at a later date.

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