NWN: We have stolen this comment from a leftie site, that were asking for comments from BNP people. It has an awful lot of truth to it.
Each of the steps taken by Griffin to take money out of the BNP is probably legal...in isolation...but taken together as part of a whole scheme, they may well amount to theft.
It all depends on intent.
If dishonest from the outset, it is theft.
If not, it is incompetence or a difference of opinion.Proving intent or the state of an individual's mind is obviously difficult.However, it can be shown by the combination of two or more actions that lead inevitably to a result.
If the board of directors of a limited company did the following:gained election;used office to promote their friends/relatives bypassing usual selection procedures based on assessment of merit;(such as Mark Collett after incurring the PR disaster of 'young, nazi and proud')changed internal rules to choke information channels to the shareholders;witheld relevant information - ie information that would allow a proper assessment - from shareholders;(such as full, open, audited accounts showing directors' fees etc)changed rules by which others could seek election to office of director;massively increased directors' fees without any corresponding increase in revenue that could be attributed to the actions/performance of the directors;employed friends to do jobs with substantial salaries that had previously been done by others - not necessarily friends of the directors - with no salary;then I guess that the DTI might well rule that such a board of directors had 'done a Maxwell'.
I refer not to the looting of the Mirror pension funds, but to Maxwell's previous behaviour in the late 1960s, when the DTI ruled that he was not fit to run a public company.
What Griffin is accused of doing is in fact very common; treating the money of members as their own.
The founders or controlling members of small societies, be they local amateur dramatic or even small private limited companies or even large public limited companies - often do this.
Think of what Conrad Black is accused of: treating company money, the money contributed by shareholders, as his own piggy bank.
The local amdram society may be the victim of the same attitude, especially when the tresurer and secretary have held office for several years because nobody else can be bothered.
However, with companies, the list of shareholders is a public document. Any shareholder who believes the company is being run for the benefit of a few directors and not the benefit of all shareholders can eithercontact all the other shareholders to ask them to vote him onto the board of directors,orapply to the court to wind up the company compulsorily.
This involves selling all the assets and distributing the proceeds to the shareholders.
Neither of these is available to BNP members.
Griffin appears to have done the following.
Packed the 'board of directors' or its equivalent in the BNP with his friends.
Restricted access by members to other members, by keeping the membership lists secret AND by restricting access to party publications.
It is the combination of the two that is important.
Either one on its own can be justified, but when acting together, they cannot.
Seized control of the rule book by which he can change the rules at critical moments - such as after nominations close and before any election contest starts.
The effect is to remove any real prospect of being held accountable for his actions.
Then he has done what he liked with the revenue.
What does this combination reveal about his intent?
NWN: This site has more than once alluded to the point that Nick Griffin, a bankrupt, or former bankrupt, should never be allowed near any money.