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UK extremist sentenced over videos tied to US shootings

Wesley Dockery
January 27, 2023

The far-right videos are believed to have influenced two shootings in New York and Colorado. The British 19-year-old was earlier found guilty of encouraging terrorism in his video content.

The Manchester Crown Court
The Manchester Crown Court condemned Harris for his 'highly dangerous' views Image: Steve Allen/A Wire/dpa/picture alliance

A British court on Friday sentenced a 19-year-old man to over 11 years in prison for his videos promoting far-right extremism, with the racist online material linked to mass shootings in several US states. 

Judge Patrick Field of the Manchester Crown Court in northern England labeled Daniel Harris a "propagandist for an extremist right-wing ideology." Harris expressed racist, antisemitic, misogynistic and homophobic views in his videos, according to the court. 

"You intended to encourage terrorism, and it's plain that what was being encouraged was lethal, racist and antisemitic violence, as well as violence against the gay community," the judge said.  

Harris, who hails from the northern county of Derbyshire, is believed to have made content expressing support for the far-right killer of left-wing British Parliament Member Jo Cox.

The 19-year-old was earlier convicted in December on five counts of encouraging terrorism and one count of possessing a 3D printer with which he tried to manufacture a firearm. Harris is believed to have begun posting videos when he was 17. 

Harris' videos linked to shootings in New York, Colorado

Harris' extremist material is believed to have helped inspire two mass shootings the US: one in Buffalo, New York and the other in Colorado Springs, Colorado.

Payton Gendron, who killed 10 Black people in Buffalo at a supermarket in May 2022, is believed to have shared Harris' videos. One of the videos calls for the "total extermination" of people Harris derides as "subhumans." 

The Buffalo shooting is believed to have been motivated by a white supremacist ideologyImage: Brendan McDermid/REUTERS

Harris was taken into custody by counterterrorism police two days after the Buffalo shooting.  

Anderson Lee Aldrich, the only suspect behind the shooting at a gay nightclub in Colorado Springs which left five people dead, is believed to have viewed one of Harris's videos.

The only suspect behind the Club Q shooting remains in custody Image: Parker Seibold/The Gazette/AP/picture alliance

Earlier, Harris was convicted for damaging a memorial to George Floyd in Manchester. Floyd, a Black man, was killed by a white police officer in May 2020 in the US city of Minneapolis, with his death sparking a wave of racial justice protests across the country that summer. 

Material from AFP and UK media contributed to this report

Edited by: Darko Janjevic

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