An Evangelical Network and Covid Vaccine Alarmism

From British Christian magazine Woman Alive, last month:

Former midwife Laura Brett says she has been called an ‘anti-vaxxer’ and ‘conspiracy theorist’. Here she explains how asking questions led to her personal conviction that no one should have been pressured into taking the Covid-19 vaccine.

Brett alleges that Covid vaccination is “one of the biggest medical frauds in history”, and she writes that in October 2023

we gathered 100 church leaders, heads of charities and other prominent people in the Houses of Parliament to worship, pray and provide evidence-based information about the truth concerning Covid-19 and the vaccination programme

The “hook” for the article was AstraZeneca’s admission in court documents that their vaccine can in rare cases cause blood clots. Although this has been widely known now for several years, the acknowledgement had been presented sensationally in the media as a new development.

Brett is the author of a book called Losing Liberty, Finding Freedom, and as well as being a “former midwife” she describes herself as “an evangelist, a qualified midwife, international speaker, mentor and activist… positioned at the frontline of Christian ministry”. The book came out last last year, and the back cover features a blurb from none other than Covid conspiracist Michael Yeadon praising the work as “a loud bright celebration of the power and greatness of God!” The book was launched first in Williamsburg, VA, but then also in London in January this year: attendees (H/T @PozzyWozzy) included Andrew Bridgen MP, as well as Lara Fawcett, a PR agent known primarily to the public as Bear Grylls’ sister. Bridgen has posted some photos, including one in which he and Fawcett pose in front of a hanging t-shirt bearing the words “conspiracy theorist”.

The front cover of the book, meanwhile, comes with blurb from “Rev Richard Fothergill, Founder and CEO of the Filling Station Trust”. Fothergill was in the news a year ago, after he was “de-banked” after writing to the Yorkshire Building Society “to complain about their public messaging during Pride month”, particular as regards “gender ideology”. The “Filling Station Trust” organises “celebration meetings” around the country, meaning worship sessions along evangelical/Charismatic lines. This is Brett’s own affiliation, and Fothergill is on board with her anti-Covid vaccination alarmism. Writing a comment on the Premier Christian Radio Facebook page, he recently expressed the view that

The eminent Proff [unidentified] got it very wrong. The Vax was never suggested as being ‘experimental’. It was forced on us as a necessity. ‘Don’t kill granny’ remember? We were lied to and now those who did this hope to brush it all under the carpet. Evil days 2020-2022.

In the same thread, Brett adds:

We are happy to pray for anyone who is vax injured or worried they might be and we pray deliverance of all the spike proteins etc. We do this all the time at Harrogate Filling Station. Just get in touch via email and we can do that via zoom. The Lord heals!

Alongside running the Filling Station network, Fothergill is also “Trustee & Relational Covering” of a Christian coffee shop project in Yeovil called “Bread”, run by an evangelist named Dominic Muir. Muir’s other projects include “the Wesley Academy”, where he is listed as “Minister” alongside Rev Dr Joseph Boot, Virginia Logan, Sam Kyung-Min Lee and Joseph Buthee, described as “Bread Church coffee shop manager”. However, Buthee has more recently been active in London, and he recently led the Lord’s Prayer at the recent Tommy Robinson rally in London. Robinson has himself joined the Covid antivax bandwagon, and in September last year he was photographed with Bridgen at a conference in Denmark.

Tommy Robinson Protest: Populist Grievances and an Abridged Lord’s Prayer

From the Evening Standard:

Thousands of people gathered in Parliament Square on Saturday for a protest organised by Tommy Robinson.

Speeches were given by Mr Robinson, whose real name is Stephen Yaxley Lennon, Reclaim leader Laurence Fox and political commentator Carl Benjamin.

The focus of the protest was meant to be “two-tier policing” although Robinson had a broader list of grievances that were set out in a pre-recorded message broadcast to the crowd from a big screen above the man himself:

They shut down the country. They took away our rights and our freedoms. They flirted with compelling medical treatment, they caused the inflation we suffer from by printing money, continually printing money. And don’t ask questions about excess deaths – miscarriages, stillbirths, cancers, heart disease and vaccine efficacy and [such?]. The failure to reject net zero, the Marxist anti-capitalist dogma that will drive millions into poverty and hardship. They embrace unilateral economic disarmament. They can’t stop the tide, they can’t stop an earthquake, a hurricane, or even a strong breeze, yet they want us to believe that if they tax us more they’ll be able to stop the climate from changing… there’s over a hundred genders, because we say there are. And what will come next? Sex with little children is just another form of sexual expression? It will not be long before denouncing paedophilia is demonized.

Pre-recorded messages were also provided from June Slater of UK Politics Uncovered and from Katie Hopkins, among others – Hopkins was unable to be there in person because she was speaking at the Weekend Truth Festival in Cumbria (covered by Sky News here). Fox used the platform to rail against Pride Month, which (as usual) he described as a “child mutilation cult”.

So far so predictable, but there was an unexpected turn to religion at the end, when an unnamed speaker started talking about a “spiritual battle”, unfurled a banner declaring “Jesus is King” and led the crowd in saying the Lord’s Prayer – although pointedly he skipped over the line “As we forgive those who tresspass against us”. The speaker urged the crowd to “pray with me like you did in Sunday School”, an implicit acknowledgement that this was primarily an appeal to populist nostalgia, drawing on half-remembered phrases in communal memory.

The speaker also had a banner declaring “Jesus is King”, written in the same block capital font that was seen at last week’s “Disciples of Christ” protest outside the Azerbaijan Embassy. That event was led by someone who calls himself “Bob of Speakers Corner”, and Robinson also invited him onto the stage. Bob got the crowd to chant “Christ is King”, although I suspect for most participants this was just another supremacist slogan rather than an affirmation of faith, with no deeper meaning than the chant of “Allah, Allah, who the fuck is Allah?” that was heard from some of the crowd during the march from Victoria Station.

The Mail wrote up the protest as “London Protest Chaos”, an assessment which one person who watched the whole thing with a critical eye described as “ridiculous”. The framing, though, is useful for creating the impression that protests in general are problematic and need a firmer hand.

(H/T @Nullen80 for various clips)

UPDATE: The person who led the Lord’s Prayer was one Joseph Buthee, and he says that the missing part was just a mistake.

UK Nicholas Rossi Documentary Revives Utah “Ritualistic Abuse” Probe Controversy

From the Scottish Sun, back in June 2022 (link added):

FUGITIVE rape suspect Nicholas Rossi has been slammed for accusing the prosecutor who is trying to extradite him back to the US of “ritualised child sex abuse”.

Lawman David Leavitt claims Glasgow-based Rossi accused him and his sex therapist wife Chelom of being involved in the “cannibalising and murder of small children”.

…Rossi’s claims were published on the same day the Utah County Sheriff’s Office issued a news release about a an ongoing probe into ritualistic child sexual abuse said to have taken place between 1990 and 2010.

[Leavitt] said: “That this occurs less than one week before ballots drop in an election which I am participating in causes me tremendous concern over the connections between a convicted sex offender, Nicholas Rossi, and the Utah County Sheriff’s Office.”

The incident has now been revisited in Imposter: The Man Who Came Back From the Dead, a four-part documentary series made by Five Mile Films and currently showing on the UK’s Channel 4. Famously, Rossi had surfaced in Glasgow claiming to be an Englishman named “Arthur Knight” – his overdone accent, 1940s Churchillian attire and unconvincing protestations of ongoing disability after suffering from Covid seemed comical in news clips, but the documentary leaves no doubt that “Knight” is actually a narcissistic financial and sexual predator who has had a string of women victims.

The Scottish Sun says that police in Utah “claimed a man claiming to be Knight had contacted them under the guise of an investigative reporter and that they didn’t know he was a fugitive facing extradition” The new documentary features input from a Scottish journalist named Marc Horne, who goes into further details about how this happened; Horne has also written up an account that was recently published in the Sunday Times Magazine:

I phoned the Sheriff’s Office, which had endorsed Leavitt’s electorial rival, and got through to a senior officer. “Ain’t that a coincidence,” he told me. “I’ve already been speaking to an investigative journalist from your part of the world. He’s given us credibile information about allegations of ritualised abuse. It’s a guy called Arthur Knight – you know him?

He gave an audible gulp when I told him his source was a suspected fugitive and alleged rapist who had faked his own death and was wanted by the FBI.

The notion that UCSO found Rossi “credible” is itself alarming; and Leavitt thinks that the flow of information actually went from the police to Rossi. As reported by Brandy Zadrozny in September 2022:

…Nicholas Rossi, an American who has been accused of faking his death and escaping to Scotland to evade rape charges in Utah, posted videos in which he accused Leavitt and his wife of leading a “ritual sex abuse cult.” Leavitt was overseeing an effort to extradite and prosecute Rossi.

As evidence for his claims, Rossi posted a 151-page statement, made a decade ago by an unnamed woman as part of a criminal case against a therapist that was later dismissed. That statement — which NBC News obtained via public records request to the Provo police department — included gory allegations of sexual abuse and mass murder from the 1980s and ʼ90s perpetrated not just by the therapist, but by more than a dozen other members of the Provo community, including David Leavitt and his wife. In a phone interview, Rossi, who posted the document to his now-defunct website, Zeus News Now, declined to share how he learned about or obtained the document.

UCSO denies having had anything to do with Rossi getting hold of the document – as such, its publication on the same day that UCSO announced an investigation into “ritualistic abuse” was simply coincidental. Leavitt had also inferred collusion because Rossi had further claimed that he had received “exclusive confirmation” from UCSO that the Leavitts were the “primary suspects”. As reported by 2KUTV, Leavitt and Sheriff Mike Smith held rival press conferences about the matter:

Leavitt called the victim of the case [involving the therapist] ‘tragically mentally ill’ and dismissed that he or his wife had ever participated in ritual child sex abuse.

…Leavitt suggested the timing of the Utah County Sheriff’s Office announcement of its ‘ritualistic sex abuse’ investigation is politically motivated. “

…At a hastily-called press conference Wednesday afternoon, Sheriff Smith said Leavitt has his facts wrong.

Smith said the ritual sex abuse investigation involves more than just the case where Leavitt said he and his wife were accused.

“Several times, Mr. Leavitt named himself and mentioned cannibalism and murder. This investigation is about child sex abuse,” Smith said. “I take exception to any victim coming forward and being categorized as ‘tragically mentally ill’. How dare you. These are victims of crimes who have mustered the courage to come forward and this is what you call them? Mentally ill. How dare you.”

Smith’s response here is inconsistent – if the allegations about “cannibalism and murder” are a distraction from a more credible child sex abuse case, why was he so keen to defend the unnamed person who made them?

Although Leavitt himself features in the Channel 4 documentary, this part of the background story is told by Horne:

David Leavitt had a neighbour by the name of David Hamblin. Allegations emerged that he was using hypnotheray to abuse small children. His wife decided she was going to divorce him. David Leavitt gave evidence against Mr Hamblin in court. According to David Leavitt, Mr Hamblin tried to take revenge on him by hypnotising what he described as a “mentally ill woman”, brainwashing her, and then encouraging her to to go to the police with allegations that David Leavitt was part of a ritualised paedophile ring, a murderer and a cannibal. (1)

This would seem to be an example of “recovered memory therapy”, in which a therapist uses hynotism or other techniques to persuade someone that they had been sexually abused in childhood and had repressed the memory of it. Of course, “mentally ill” carries broad stigmatising connotations of delusion and irrationality that do not reflect why someone goes to a therapist or may come to believe false memories, and it seems that Smith seized on Leavitt’s unguarded usage.

However, there is a strange discrepancy here: David Lee Hamblin and his ex-wife have now been charged as a result of the “probe” (his mugshot even appears in the documentary), and the details suggest that the USCO news release in 2022 was about them all along. Here’s how Fox 13 reported Leavitt’s press conference a few months later, including a quote from Leavitt:

“When I was a law student, this therapist was my elder’s quorum president with the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. He was my neighbor. I had a family connection… There was no organized ring of abuse. It was debunked more than ten years ago.”

During that same press conference, Leavitt described his accuser as “tragically mentally ill.”

She is one of the same women who accused Hamblin and others.

This was written by Adam Herbets, who was criticised by name by Leavitt during the press conference (he responded here). So, in this version, the woman who provided the “151-page statement” also accused Hamblin, rather than having been incited by Hamblin to accuse others – in which case, Horne’s version is garbled. The reference to “women” in the plural indicates that the current case against Hamlin and his wife does not rely on this woman exclusively, although “one of the same women” is a strange construction, given that other women did not feature previously. The article also notes that Leavitt said that he had previously prosecuted Hamblin for “poaching a deer… for ritualistic purposes”,  here meaning some sort of Native American-inspired practice.

The Salt Lake Tribune pointedly notes that Hamblin and his ex-wife are “the only two people who were eventually charged” in relation to the sex abuse probe, highlighting the contrast with UCSO’s original implication of a wider conspiracy (the Epoch Times quoted UCSO’s Spencer Cannon in September 2022 as saying that they “anticipate there will be more arrests in the future”). It seems that UCSO’s use of the term “ritualistic” has a far broader meaning than the “Satanic cult” context that is usually implied when the word is evoked. As described in report about the case by ABC4:

The term “ritualistic” means that more than one person was involved, the abuse was considered organized, and there may be a religious element to the abuse.

This reminds me of how “ritualistic” was use in a similar very loose way in Australia in 2018.


1. The Channel 4 subtitles for Imposter spell Hamblin as “David Hamlin”.

UKIP and the “Disciples of Christ”

News from Holland Park in West London, where a new group called “Disciples of Christ” has been holding a protest:

We stand with the persecuted Armenian Christians. We won’t be silent until the genocide ends. We will continue to protest the Azerbaijani embassy until we have justice. Christ is King. ✝️☦️

The event was videoed by Mahyar Tousi, including two speakers: a street evangelist who goes by the names “Bob of Speaker’s Corner” and “Bob the Builder” (1), and Nick Tenconi, the new Deputy Leader of UKIP and COO of Turning Point UK. Both referred to last year’s developments in Artsakh (Nagorno-Karabakh) in terms of “Islamist genocide”, although much of the rhetoric captured by Tousi was about how this protest was the start of “Christian street movement” that would oppose not only Islam but also “liberalism” and “libertarianism”, the former broadly defined along lines familiar to anyone who follows the talking points of the populist right (“globalists” also got a mention). One chant recorded was actually about “apostate clergy” rather than anything to do with Armenia or Azerbaijan. Tenconi also referred to “muscular Christianity”, and told the small crowd that as Christians they are “at war”. (2)

A photograph of the event shows 14 men, holding what appear to be professionally produced banners bearing the messages “THE ONE TRUE FAITH”, “END THE PERSECUTION OF CHRISTIANS” and “CHRIST IS KING”. Online, the group describes itself as

The Christian crusade to rebuild the Church. ✝️☦️ All denominations welcome. The Christian protest group of the UK. Activism, education, networking.

Tenconi was presented as a guest speaker rather than an organiser, although he was the first Disciples of Christ “follow” on Twitter/X. The event was also promoted beforehand by Tommy Robinson, although he wasn’t present.


1. Another name he uses is “Bob Soco”, which either reflects or inspired an online branding as “Soldier of Christ Online”.

3. Tenconi’s “war” rhetoric also features in a new video from UKIP. Walking alongside the new party leader, Lois Perry (but, oddly, speaking more than her), he states:

We will declare war on the far-left… we will declare war on communism, we will declare war on Islamofascism, we will declare war on woke. You need war-time leaders – you’re looking at them.

An old Tweet from Christmas Day 2022 shows him in the USA shaking hands with Kyle Rittenhouse, with the commentary “Alphas > liberal betas”. The continued significance of UKIP, though is doubtful – although the party announced the percentage by which Perry won the leadership, it has been noted that the absolute numbers were not disclosed.

Conspiracist Doctor Apologises Over Paedophile Accusation

From the Daily Express:

This Morning star Dr Ranj has achieved a “small victory” after a brutal troll was forced to retract his paedophile accusation against him [1] and made to apologise for his actions.

…The ITV star shared the apology to his Instagram page…

He penned: “FINALLY! After a horrible process spanning almost a year, this individual has at last been held accountable and made to apologise and pay for his disgusting attacks.

“But I am not the only person he has targeted. There are so many others who have been caused unnecessary distress because of his unprofessional behaviour. No doubt more of his antics will be revealed at his GMC hearing later this year… and I’m hoping he will face the proper repercussions…”

The reference in there to the GMC (General Medical Council) is likely to confuse many Express readers – in tabloidland, the stereotypical “troll” is either a social inadequate or a crude thug, yet here we have a different species: a troll with professional credentials and standing. Although not named by the paper, Ranj Singh’s accuser was none other than Dr David Cartland MRCGP, MBChB, BMedSci (var. “Dr Dave Cartland”), who in recent years has become infamous on social media for making wild claims about Covid vaccination and other subjects. As noted by John Bye last month:

David Cartland is under investigation by the GMC over allegations of bullying and harassment. He claims that covid vaccines make you magnetic, and has shared bizarre conspiracy theories about 5G, chemtrails and freemasons. He’s friends with David Icke.

In January he amplified – and then quietly backed down from – the proposition that “Every Single Aspect of the Covid Agenda is Jewish”. A few days from now, he will be appearing at an event in Leicester organised by “British Lions for Freedom”, alongside the likes of Andrew Bridgen and Fiona Diamond.

Like some some other trolls who can present as articulate, Cartland likes to boast about how he has a “police evidence portfolio” that will see critics brought to book by the authorities. He believes that anti-conspiracists are organised into a movement that he calls “77th” (meaning the 77th Brigade of the British Army, which conducts psychological operations) or the “Mutton Crew”, in reference to a artisan online butchers that has made scathing comments about him and the antivax movement.

One person who has tried to reason with Cartland is the former conspiracist Brent Lee. Back in June it seemed he had made some headway, and he related that Cartland appeared to be able to put his beliefs aside when it came to discharging his professional duties:

I was so annoyed Tuesday, I decided to confront Dr. David Cartland and surprised him with a video call. I’m blocked here, but I remembered that we had arranged the infamous debate on Telegram. I’m glad I did it. I was able to show him around the factory where I work and convince him I’m a regular guy. I was able to explain why I do what I do and hopefully have convinced him that I’m not connected to anyone and that I have nothing to do with any complaints against him. […]

Cartland is a conspiracy theorist.

But also, now this is very important..

Cartland is a Doctor. And he cares about health. I told him about my partner’s illness and he literally transformed into an attentive and caring GP and offered me a lot of advice.

We’re not friends and we never will be, but it was good to smooth a few things over and I appreciate him taking the time to take my call.

This didn’t last very long, though:

…he started spreading rumours online that I was having an affair with my friend, a well-known journalist. I blocked him. Soon after this submitted all of our communications including the harassment to a GMC compliant against him

4 months on, I see he’s been continuing this rumour, at one point, brought my partner into his attacks on me. This has gone too far. My partner has now asked him to stop, but so far, we have had no response. What a cult.

However, although Brent has made some media appearances in recent months he’s not a “celebrity”, and as such Cartland’s “brutal trolling” in this case is unlikely to make the Daily Express.


1. Here’s Cartland’s apology to Singh in full:

In May and June 2023, I published various tweets alleging that Dr Ranj Singh was a paedophile or sympathises unjustifiably with paedophiles. I accept that these allegations were wholly untrue, and that I had no basis to make them. I sincerely apologise to Dr Singh for the harm and upset I have caused. I have made a donation to a charity of his choice, and paid his legal costs. I will not be commenting on this matter again, save for any response that I give in evidence (written or oral) before a court or Tribunal in England and Wales.

However, at the same time he also writes:

Still waiting to see evidence of me calling any human being on earth a paedophile tonight let’s see how the feed fills up!!!! Please post every derogatory meme and post I have ever published directly linking any human to Paedophillia??? Evidence most welcome

Cartland’s attack on Singh appears to have been extrapolated from a 2013 remark that tabloids reported five years later when Singh was on Strictly.

Richard Tice Complains about Hope Not Hate after Dropping Reform Candidates

On Twitter (aka X), Reform Party chair Richard Tice commends a polemic against Hope Not Hate that appeared late last month (issue dated 2 March) in The Spectator:

Superb by ⁦@DouglasKMurray

The sinister tactics of Hope Not Hate

They should be renamed Hate not Hope [link]

Tice’s post was met with widespread derision by other fringe-right activists: in recent days, Tice has had to drop several Reform election candidates after HNH drew attention to past effusions that seem at odds with Tice’s insistance (backed up with legal threats) that his party is not “far right”. As such, highlighting Murray’s month-old article at this point comes across as compensatory. Particularly scathing was Carl Benjamin, who demanded “why allow them to bully you into deselecting good Reform candidates?” Benjamin has an interest here: one candidate dropped by Reform was one Beau Dade, who works “full time as a content creator” for Benjamin’s Lotus Eaters podcast. HNH had noted a deleted article on a website called The Mallard, in which Dade had called for mass deportations, prosecutions of civil servants and judges, and banning orders against media organisations of which he disapproves.

Murray’s article is titled “The sinister tactics of Hope Not Hate” – I suppose “The annoying tactics of Hote Not Hate” would have been less compelling, although it would have better reflected Murray’s irritated tone and limited scope. Murray’s charge is that HNH notices things that ought not to be of wider interest, at the expense of things that are more important. In particular, HNH and The News Agents podcast recently drew attention to likes and reposts from a Twitter/X account controlled by Paul Marshall, the co-owner of GB News who is hoping to purchase The Telegraph – as described by Alan Rusbridger in the Independent, these were “at the extreme end of mainstream political opinion about Islam, the expulsion of migrants and homosexuality”. Murray alleges that the findings were “cherry-picked”, although he doesn’t build a case for misrepresentation, and he scoffs that Marshall’s account (@areopagus123) was public anyway – in fact, though, readers have been restricted since September, and his control of the account isn’t immediately self-evident.

Meanwhile, one person who oddly is not complaining about Hope Not Hate is a GB News presenter who was recently accused of posting extreme content to Telegram under a pseudonym. HNH’s piece doesn’t explain how the identity was uncovered, and GB News supporters have accused HNH of making it up. This seems to me very unlikely, although mistakes are possible and so I won’t name the person concerned for the moment. However, it should be noted that this individual has not been seen on GB News since the story was published, and although they have made a few Twitter posts in the last day or so they have not addressed the allegation, despite having criticised HNH in the present past. [UPDATE (8 April)The Times has now reported the allegations, which pertain to Leo Kearse. It notes that Kearse “did not host his weekly Saturday Night Showdown at the weekend” and that “neither he nor GB News have responded to questions about his absence”.]

The Princess of Wales and Covid Vaccination Conspiracism

Despite the (selective) shaming of social media conspiracy theorising as regards Catherine, Princess of Wales (aka Kate Middleton), media focus on the “trolls” has not particularly noted the overlap with Covid conspiracism. As the prophecy of mass Covid vaccination mortality has failed to come to pass, believers (and more cynical promoters) have compensated by attributing all kinds of illnesses to the vaccine: thus in late 2022, Aseem Malhotra announced that Covid vaccination likely explains “all unexplained heart attacks, strokes, cardiac arrhythmias, & heart failure since 2021”. Since then, cancer has been added to the list, sometimes described as being a distinctive “turbo-cancer“. Stories in the media relating health are interpreted as either reflecting, or as being planted to explain away, this supposed reality.

As such, it was inevitable that the princess’s lack of visibility and then her cancer diagnosis would be interpreted as evidence of vaccine harm, as a cover story for vaccine harm, or as a bizarre conspiracy to “normalise” cancer. One figure of note active here is James Freeman Wells, who filmed Malhotra’s earlier statement and who has also been involved with organising events for Andrew Bridgen. A week ago Freeman spoke with “private investigator” Christine Hart, who told him that she had heard from journalists “that Kate is vaccine injured”, although she didn’t know if that was true (1). Freeman has now reposted this clip from his conversation, adding that it is “a question in the public interest” and that calls to respect the princess’s privacy are “bollocks”.

Meanwhile, David Vance suggests it is “odd” that Kate and King Charles both have cancer (here), and he appeared to agree (apparently now deleted) with someone expressing the view that the royal family “is busy making her look stupid”, because “they don’t want people knowing it’s probably the jab”. Other unpleasant and unhinged reactions on Twitter/X have been rounded up by John Bye. The most distasteful is perhaps from former Telegraph cartoonist Bob Moran, who  suggests that “Either Pfizer has taken to employing whole families to sell their ‘cancer vaccine’, or karma doesn’t skip royalty”; Leilani Dowding is less vicious, but also takes the view that the diagnosis will be used to promote a bogus cancer vaccine as well as to “try to normalise cancer in young people”.

Moving on, Eric Clapton’s friend Robin Monotti asks “KATE MIDDLETON YET ANOTHER VICTIM OF THE MRNA TURBOCANCER INJECTIONS?”, and quotes William Makis MD as saying

Kate Middleton should urgently seek out medical professionals who understand the phenomenon of mRNA Induced Immune system damage and Turbo Cancer and can offer her alternative treatments (high dose Ivermectin, Fenbendazole) that could save her life.

This in turn has been endorsed by the dietician Tim Noakes (part of Malhotra’s network, as discussed here), who adds “Such important advice for the Princess of Wales. Please listen to it @KensingtonRoyal”. Such extravagant remote diagnoses from supposed medical professionals are of course unseemly and ought to be disqualifying for anyone wanting to be taken seriously.

However, not everyone is on the bandwagon – it’s perhaps notable for instance that neither Bridgen nor Malhotra have said anything about it, one suspects primarily out of fear of a backlash rather than due to a new-found moderation.


(1) Christine Hart here is obviously merely claiming to be “in the know” through access to privileged gossip. However, she also reportedly knows a thing or two about getting hold of people’s medical details, having allegedly been tasked by tabloid journalists in the 1990s and 2000s to “blag” medical information about public figures and members of their families. The matter is discussed in the Approved Judgment in Duke of Sussex vs MGN (particularly pages 350-352), which ranges much more widely than just Prince Harry’s specific complaints against Mirror Group Newspapers.

Media Decries Princess of Wales Disinformation

The adjacent collage, compiled by Twitter/X user @PGander73, shows an orchestrated attempt to swamp the platform with the distorted AI interpretation of the famous low-resolution video of Catherine, Princess of Wales (or “Kate Middleton”, as she is still frequently referenced) leaving the Royal Farms Windsor Farm Shop. Previously, it had been claimed that the AI version was an “enhancement” of the original and that the woman in the image must therefore be someone else, rather than that it shows how AI extrapolates wildly when asked to work with insufficient information. In these posts, the AI provenance isn’t even noted, increasingly the likelihood of confusion.

The collage caught the eye of the Daily Mail’s diarist Richard Eden, who asked: “Big question: Who is paying for this weird conspiracy theory promotion?” Given that Russian media had just published a fake story claiming that King Charles had died, I’m inclined to the view that this was likely the work of some Russian bot farm, the repeated question “Why do these big media channels want to make us believe these are Kate and William?” being a way to promote kneejerk incredulity about British and American media (a stance distinct from reasonable critical distance). Alongside these cut-and-paste efforts the AI image was also promoted by conspiracy influencers such as James Melville.

In the wake of the princess’s disclosure of her cancer diagnosis, Eden is now busy as part of a media chorus rebuking various individuals who promoted conspiracy theories, made wild speculations or joked about recent her lack of public visibility or the minor optimisation editing of her Mother’s Day photo. In particular, Mail ire has fallen on “Prince Harry and Meghan Markle’s supporter Christopher Bouzy, who appeared in Sussexes’ Netflix doc” and on Omid Scobie, for a “tasteless picture of alarm clock set for 6pm – the exact time Kate released heartbreaking statement”. This, of course, reflects the DMG Media’s ongoing line against Prince Harry ahead of his upcoming legal action against them over phone hacking.

Trolls in general are also admonished, in particular some guy named Paul Condron, who “spewed deeply hurtful and false stories about Kate” on TikTok. However, tabloids don’t tend to take a consistent line on the evils of “trolls”: in 2021 someone who called Meghan Markle a “bitch” on Twitter was presented by the MailOnline as a representative example of righteous British anger at her Oprah interview. What counts as a conspiracy theory to be rejected by all right-thinking people is also flexible.

There is, though, a danger of going too far the other way – when the farm shop video first appeared it was reasonable to be cautious about whether the two individuals had been correctly identified, not because of some all-powerful Palace conspiracy but because the images weren’t ideal quality and there’s a monetary incentive to trick newspapers. The Daily Mirror‘s “Sorry… We Were Hoaxed” headline is 20 years old, but casts a long shadow.

UPDATE (1 April): As reported in Vanity Fair magazine:

On Wednesday, The New York Times spoke to Martin Innes, a professor at Cardiff University who leads their Security, Crime and Intelligence Innovation Institute, about his research connecting 45 social media accounts spreading claims about the princess to “a Kremlin-linked disinformation network” commonly nicknamed Doppelgänger.

…Innes notes that disinformation networks might also be motivated to attack the British royal family in order to deepen a sense of chaos and erode trust in Western institutions. “It provokes an emotional reaction,” he said of the influence campaign. “The story was already being framed in conspiracy terms, so you can appeal to those people. And people who support the royal family get angry.”

Dan Wootton Still Unclear on Pseudonyms While Complaining about False Allegations

The latest issue of Private Eye magazine (1619, p. 10) updates readers about Dan Wootton, under the headline “Desperate Dan”. After noting the outcome of the recent police investigation, the piece notes:

An internal investigation at his former employer, the Sun, meanwhile, has yet to establish whether Wootton was – as several former colleagues and contacts are convinced – the mysterious figure who used pseudonyms to persuade them to share sexually explicit videos and images of themselves.

As Wootton [previously] made clear… he was prepared to ‘fess up to “errors of judgement in the past”, but insisted that “criminal allegations that have been made against me are simply untrue”.

As I noted last month, Wootton made legal threats against outlets and individuals who referenced the police investigation in October – the Guardian and the Mirror both removed articles about the matter, and he has now received out-of-court settlements from them (1). His complaint was one of privacy, although a misleading impression has been created that the papers have apologised for having aired the pseudonym allegations, rather than for reporting the existence of the investigation. (2)

Oddly, despite railing at some length against Byline Times, “leftist so-called journalists” and the testimony of his ex-partner, Wootton hasn’t found time to address the Private Eye article, nor why “former colleagues and contacts” at the Sun reportedly believe that he was behind the “Martin Branning” pseudonym. However, alongside “errors of judgement in the past”, Wootton has now also made cryptic reference to “the weaponisation of people’s perfectly legal private business”. There’s no plain statement of denial in his recent video uploads or Substack articles, and Megyn Kelly had the tact not to ask about it in a recent interview.

Alongside his new-found enthusiasm for privacy legislation (a difficult pose for a journalist who made his name in celebrity gossip), Wootton is also now presenting himself as a campaigner against false allegations, making hay from James O’Brien’s witless old support for the “VIP paedophile” hoaxer Carl Beech (3) and adding:

There is now a two-tiered justice system in the UK, where high profile and mostly right-wing personalities are a focus of police regardless of the lack of evidence or credibility from accusers driven by overwhelming malice. I mean Russell Brand, just another recent example.

Certainly, unproven accusations should not simply be accepted as fact or shielded from scrutiny, but it works both ways – and based on what we know so far about Brand’s complainants, the imputation of “malice” is unwarranted and even wild. Wootton is also offering implicit support for Andrew Tate and his brother Tristan, RTing a message of support from the latter.

It seems to me that Wootton’s statement tends towards knee-jerk scepticism and incredulity when right-wing influencers are accused of anything – a position no less pernicious than the uncritical “believe the victim” mantra.


1. The Guardian is said to have paid a “substantial” figure as a proportion of Wootton’s legal costs, while the Mirror reportedly paid “damages”. The difference, assuming it is accurate, may be because the latter paper ran with a lurid headline stating “Met Police launches probe into ‘Dan Wootton sex offences’ allegations”. This was unwise and invited readers to imagine a wide range of possible crimes. However, although browser results for the Press Gazette report brings up the phrase “tabloid makes apology and pays damages”, the word “damages” does not appear in the article itself.

2. Thus Kelvin MacKenzie, in a since-deleted Tweet (originally here): “More good news for the broadcaster Dan Wootton tonight. The Guardian has just apologised and paid legal costs to Dan for an untrue story they ran last October linking him to sexually explicit images.”

2. This was prior to Beech’s exposure, but those of us who were paying attention could see that there were reasons for caution as soon as Beech came on the scene as “Nick” in 2014.

Dan Wootton Threatens Legal Action After Police Investigation Ends

From Dan Wootton’s crowdfunder, last summer (emphasis added):

A hard left blog is on a deranged campaign of harassment designed to destroy me financially, mentally and professionally – but, with your help, they will not succeed.

…We must fight back against the current state of social media, where any allegation can be made in an attempt to get someone on the right cancelled and it is impossible to defend yourself. This is even the case where they have claimed that I have engaged in criminal activity when I have never been arrested, interviewed or charged in respect of any of the allegations against me.

As is well known, Byline Times had published allegations that Wootton had used pseudonyms to solicit intimate images of men in return for money, adding that his alleged targets believed “catfishing” to be the motive. Wootton denied having done anything criminal, although he kept to generalities: he never denied using the pseudonyms, and he referred to enigmatic “errors of judgement in the past”. He also denied other criminal allegations, which had the effect of conflating the Byline Times accusers with other individuals, against whom Wootton was able to raise issues of credibility.

Wootton’s reference to the lack of any police contact was confirmed by an article that appeared in the Independent in August:

Scotland Yard said: “In June 2023, the Metropolitan Police was contacted with regards to allegations of sexual offences committed by a man.

“Officers are assessing information to establish whether any criminal offence has taken place. There is no police investigation at this time.”

That changed in October, as was reported by the Guardian, the Mirror and Byline Times as a new development in the ongoing story. However, rather than update his supporters, Wootton – whose crowdfunder included a GB News screenshot bearing the words “No censorship” – instead reached for his lawyers. It seems that they cited the February 2022 Supreme Court ruling in Bloomberg LP v ZXC that, to quote a legal discussion here, “a person under a criminal investigation has a reasonable expectation of privacy in respect of information relating to that investigation”. The Guardian and the Mirror decided that it wasn’t worth pushing back and deleted their pieces, but Byline Times declined to do so. I discussed the issue in general terms here.

That police investigation has now ended:

In a statement, the Met said: “In June 2023, the Metropolitan police was contacted with regards to allegations of sexual offences committed by a man aged in his 40s.

“Officers assessed all information available to establish whether any criminal offence has taken place. An investigation was commenced into these allegations. All parties involved have now been advised that no further action will be taken. There were no arrests during the investigation.”

Wootton is signalling via Paul Staines’ Guido Fawkes website that he intends to take legal action, while Andy Wigmore has posted Tweet in which he appears to promise funding while denouncing “that little @peterjukes and woke leftie @Hardeep_Matharu and the rest of the extremists at @BylineTimes”. This is a bit much given that when in 2018 Wigmore filed a police complaint against Byline Media he posted a photograph of the online submission form as if that in and of itself had significance (no police action followed).

The Guido Fawkes website has also given some brief commentary about the case, inferring from the outcome that the police believe Wootton has been the subject of a “smear campaign”. That is a speculative extrapolation given how little detail Wootton has chosen to share about what happened, despite issuing a new statement.

The circumstances of ZXC are very different from the position in which Wootton found himself – and it should be noted that the “reasonable expectation of privacy” is merely a starting point, not a rule that reporters must now follow. There was no such “reasonable expectation” for instance when Keir Starmer and Angela Rayner were investigated in May 2022 after Richard Holden MP handed over misleading information to police in Durham. Of course, Wootton could alternatively complain of libel, but if he believes he has a case then it seems odd instead to launch a privacy action.

However, if Wootton does decide to press ahead, then I’m sure his testimony under oath about the pseudonyms “Martin Branning” and “Maria Joseph” will be of interest to many.

NB – the “catfishing” allegations should not be conflated with the reasons why Wootton disappeared from GB News, which I discussed here.

UPDATE: Press Gazette adds:

Dan Wootton is seeking damages, an apology and the retraction of articles from Byline Times after it reported on the fact he was being investigated by police.

Press Gazette understands that Wootton’s legal team is also writing to Carol Vorderman and former Newsnight presenter Emily Maitlis over statements made by them on Twitter.

The suspended GB News presenter is also considering legal action against other media outlets over articles published in October last year.

The notion of a “retraction” doesn’t seem coherent: even if Wootton successfully argues that the police investigation ought not to have been reported in October, that hardly applies now, when he himself has referred to end of it and the matter is common knowledge.

However, a letter from his lawyer Donal Blaney has apparently persuaded Maitlis to delete at least one old Tweet in which she noted the fact of the police investigation and what it was about, quoting Byline. Paul Staines frames this as “deleting conspiratorial tweets”, the strained suggestion being that the allegations against Wootton – including the “Martin Branning” alias – are conspiracy theories that no-one should have taken seriously. Wootton, of course, can now boast that a famous journalist has withdrawn a Tweet about the allegations.

Blaney previously ran the Young Britons Foundation (blogged here) and he has a long history of collaboration with Staines. This perhaps explains why Guido Fawkes is apparently doing free PR for Wootton.