Nick Griffin and the British National Party leadership have been plunged into their worst legal crisis yet with the Court of Appeal’s decision today that all further rights to appeal in the “Decemberists” case have been refused.
This means that the BNP leader and former deputy leader Simon Darby are now directly liable for what will be a six figure sum in costs.
This morning in Court 74 at the Royal Courts of Justice, Lord Justice Ward dismissed Mr Griffin’s and Mr Darby’s application for leave to appeal in the Griffin & Another v. Smith & Others case.
The BNP leader’s counsel, Mr Carpenter-Leech, accepted that the end of the road had been reached.
Lord Justice Ward expressed pity for the barrister who had drawn the short straw of having to represent Griffin and Darby: “You’ve done very well. I’m unimpressed, I’m afraid. It’s not your fault.”
He concluded: “None of the arguments are substantial enough to give a realistic prospect of success. I see no realistic prospect of success and I dismiss the application.”
The £45,000 which Mr Griffin and Mr Darby were forced to put up as a deposit into the court as a precursor to the appeal, has been forfeited.
The court will now, over a period which will last around three months, determine the final costs against Mr Griffin, which in December 2010 stood at around £111,000.
The final bill will be well in excess of this figure, over and above the £45,000 which has already been paid in.
The total amount owing has been compounded by the idiotic manner in which Mr Griffin and his “advisors” have continually sought to delay the proceedings.
Mr Griffin and Mr Darby have been ordered to pay interest on the final amount at a rate of 8 percent back dated to the date of the original order, which was granted in December 2010.
The “delaying tactic” has therefore unnecessarily added several thousand pounds to the bill.
Failure to pay the final bill will result in a bankruptcy order being made against Mr Griffin, Mr Darby and the British National Party. Should such a situation arise, the party would be put into administration under a court-appointed official, and would, in all likelihood, cease to function.
This is not the only disaster which is about to strike. A renewed employment tribunal hearing in the “Michaela Mackenzie” case starts today, as does party staff manager Adam Walker’s criminal affray case in the North East. Neither of these cases are likely to end in a positive outcome for the BNP.