Syrian Teenager Suing Extremist Tommy Robinson; Seeks Up to £190,000 Damages

A Syrian teenager suing extremist activist Tommy Robinson for libel is seeking damages between £150,000 ($208,331) and £190,000 ($263,887), the High Court has heard on April 26.

Catrin Evans QC, the lawyer representing 17-year-old Jamal Hijazi, called for the “substantial damages” in her written closing argument if the teenager wins the claim.

Hijazi is suing Robinson, whose real name is Stephen Christopher Yaxley-Lennon, for libel when he claimed in two videos on Facebook in 2018 that Hijazi was “not innocent and he violently attacks young English girls in school.”

Hijazi has denied Robinson’s claims.

Robinson made the allegations after a video of Hijazi being pushed on the ground and having water poured on his face went viral online.

During the conclusion of the four-day trial, Evans told the court, “In relation to the allegations which the defendant has sought to prove as substantially true, we suggest that he has not proved either of them.”

Evans argued that the allegations Robinson made against Hizaji are “of criminal offences or tantamount to criminal offences” and were “against someone who had come to this country with his family for sanctuary, seeking a better life and in particular the chance for an education and prospects for a good career.”

Evans further said that Robinson has continued in his closing submissions “to exacerbate the hurt and distress” that Hijazi has experienced.

Meanwhile, Robinson said in his closing argument, “My political beliefs are not on trial, it’s whether my reporting on publicly available information was a matter of truth or not.”

Justice Nicklin said that he will give his judgement at a later date.

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