Christopher Chope Brings Aseem Malhotra to Parliament

From MailOnline:

The NHS should launch specialised clinics to people who have suffered long-lasting illness after getting a Covid jab, an MP said today.

Sir Christopher Chope, Tory MP for Christchurch in Dorset, called for the health service to ‘take seriously’ the need to help the unlucky few who’ve become seriously unwell after getting the life-saving vaccines.

…Sir Christopher made the comments at the All-Party Parliamentary Group for the victims of vaccine damage, which he chairs.

The article goes on to discuss the “extremely rare side effect of AstraZeneca’s jab” that led to 45 confirmed deaths due to clotting. However, we then get the following detail:

…Sir Christopher also invited Dr Aseem Malhotra, an NHS-trained cardiologist, to give a talk on ‘curing the pandemic of misinformation on Covid through real evidence-based medicine’.

…Dr Malhotra argued that Pfizer’s Covid vaccine should be immediately suspended until all of the raw data on the vaccine’s effectiveness is made available.

There’s also a photo of Malhotra, which forms part of how the article is previewed when shared on social media.

Although Malhotra is only introduced about halfway into the article, his appearance wasn’t just some sort of appendage – originally, the launch of the APPG was supposed to have been a showcase for Malhotra’s recent review paper, but due to the launch being postponed after the Queen’s death he instead held his own press conference elsewhere.

John Bye has assembled some details about what happened at the APPG meeting – his Twitter thread can be seen here. According his account of an audio recording, “attendees who have actually been affected by adverse reactions often had to shout over MPs to be heard, while cranks from Aseem Malhotra to Mark Sexton [blogged here] had a field day”; Malhotra spoke for 45 minutes; and attendees who spoke from the audience included Tess Lawrie of HART (see below) and Mohammad Adil, who was suspended by the General Medical Council in 2020 for calling the Covid pandemic a “hoax” – Chope reportedly said that his suspension was “outrageous” (I blogged about Adil here).

According by Bye, one attendee said they felt “let down” by all this, eliciting an “indignant” response from Chope. Given this context, it is reasonable to suppose that AstraZeneca victims are being used to give spurious credibility and moral standing to Malhotra’s unrelated claims (1), and much else besides. Indeed, when a doctor named Alastair McAlpine dismissed the event on Twitter as “nonsense” and expressed unguarded satisfaction that only a few MPs had attended (“Lol”) he was immediately accused of mocking the victims and has now had to lock down his Twitter account due to a pile-on (encouraged by the anti-vax pop duo Right Said Fred).

The APPG has been variously called the “All-Party Parliamentary Group for the victims of vaccine damage” (Mail Online) and the “All-Party Parliamentary Group on Vaccine Damage” (Malhotra’s press conference blurb), although the formal name is the “All-Party Parliamentary Group on Covid-19 Vaccine Damage”. Christopher Chope is the chair; other MPs listed as officers are the Conservative MPs Edward Leigh, Desmond Swayne and Greg Knight, along with Graham Stringer from Labour. According to James Freeman Wells, who appears to be Malhotra’s impresario, Malhotra’s invitation was “supported by Sir Jeremy Wright MP, Andrew Bridgen MP, Sir Desmond Swayne MP & Danny Kruger MP”.

Another thread by Bye, from October 2021, is useful as background to how the APPG has come about, highlighting the likely involvement of the anti-Covid vaccination group HART (Health Advisory and Recovery Team). His account is pieced together from HART’s leaked chatlogs, extracts from which are included as screenshots.

As he explains, “HART’s strategy (set by founder Narice Bernard and political fixer Bernie de Haldevang) was to work as a ‘scientific partner’ to the Conservative backbench 1922 Committee and Covid Recovery Group, providing them with evidence to use to sway government policy”. Bernie de Haldevang apparently had the confidence of Andrew Rosindell MP, and he used ” Rosindell as a gateway to Liam Fox and the CRG’s Mark Harper and Steve Baker.” HART members later had a meeting “with Graham Brady, Andrew Bridgen and other MPs”. After that, the “Brady connection” was useful “when William Wragg and Christopher Chope ask questions in Parliament about post-vaccination deaths.”

Those questions were about vaccine effectiveness rather than adverse reactions, but HART’s view was that they could be pointed “in the right direction”. Brady then conveyed a letter to Chope from HART (written by Jemma Moran, who was also at the APPG meeting), and a few months later Chope put forward a “Vaccine Damage Bill” in Parliament. This new APPG is the natural follow-on from that.

UPDATE: John Bye adds:

Also attending the APPG meeting were conspiracy theorists Maajid Nawaz and Matt Le Tissier, and HART’s Ros Jones, Clare Craig, Norman Fenton, Martin Neil *and* Tony Hinton.

Meanwhile people who actually suffered adverse reactions struggled to find seats.

As evidnce for the latter, he notes a Tweet from a vaccine injury support group (CV1) stating “No one listened to us yesterday because the focus was not on us. We are very dissapointed that we all made the effort to come to a meeting where we had to fight for seats and shout to make our voices heard”.


(1) Malhotra’s allegations have become increasingly extravagant as his media profile has grown: he now claims that Covid vaccination likely explains “all unexplained heart attacks, strokes, cardiac arrhythmias, & heart failure since 2021”; that Pfizer knew that their vaccine would cause the effects he alleges; and that the pharmaceutical industry is a “psychopathic entity” with control over governments and medical guidelines. He also uncritically endorses social media narratives alleging vaccine deaths, and he has done a right-wing media round involving GB News, Russell Brand, Fox News (Laura Ingraham) and, erm, a shock jock from Tucson named Garret Lewis. Acting as a gateway into the conspiracy milieu, he also Re-Tweets supportive comments from the likes of John Mappin (UK QAnon enthusiast) and Maajid Nawaz. Attempting to convince his professional peers, though, appears to be less of a priority.

More Notes on Aseem Malhotra and Associates

From AFP Canada:

A cardiologist from the United Kingdom says Covid-19 vaccines should be suspended because they pose a greater threat than the virus itself…. Cardiologist Aseem Malhotra appeared September 27, 2022 in a press conference with the World Council for Health — a group that has previously spread vaccine misinformation — to call for the “immediate and complete suspension of Covid-19 vaccine.”

…Following the press conference, Malhotra tweeted about his paper, titled: “Curing the pandemic of misinformation on Covid-19 mRNA vaccines through real evidence-based medicine.” Published in Insulin Resistance — an open-access journal where Malhotra serves on the editorial board — the article received thousands of interactions on social media, according to CrowdTangle, a monitoring tool.

….The findings were further amplified in articles and posts from organizations that AFP has previously found to spread vaccine misinformation, including Children’s Health Defense, The Epoch Times and the Gateway Pundit. On October 3, 2022, Malhotra appeared on an online program hosted by Del Bigtree, CEO of the anti-vaccination Informed Consent Action Network.

We can add an online appearance with Russell Brand to the list. The AFP article goes on to fact-check Malhotra’s work in some detail. I discussed the press conference and provided some links here.

As has been widely discussed, Malhotra’s paper was a review article that sifts through other studies for evidence – and despite Malhotra’s expertise being in cardiology, it makes forays into areas such as the effectiveness of Covid vaccination, based on a reassassment of statistical information already published elsewhere.

Malhotra’s supporters have made made a big deal about the fact that the paper was peer reviewed; the journal editor, Caryn Zinn, says that the process was “rigorous”, although given the number of errors and misrepresentations that have been identified since publication some have doubts have been raised. There’s nothing wrong with the fact that Malhotra is on the editorial board, but the paper contains only a token reference to insulin to fit the scope of the journal’s title, and as such it is reasonable to suppose that the journal was chosen because Malhotra had reason to believe he would get an easier ride. Malhotra and Zinn could put such speculation to rest by publishing the reviewers’ comments so that we could judge for ourselves.

Malhotra’s paper includes a reference to Zoë Harcombe, an “obesity researcher” who is involved with the anti-Covid vaccination group HART – Malhotra describes her as having “investigated” the possibility that the UK Government’s Joint Committee on Vaccination and Immunisation may have been “biased” due to members working for organisations that have received funding from Bill Gates. Malhotra, Harcombe and Zinn have actually been networked since before Covid – along with a high-profile sports scientist in South Africa named Tim Noakes they have advocated together against sugar and carbohydrates, and in favour of fat, and against the use of statins. In 2016, Zinn and Harcombe provided testimony in support of Noakes when he was being investigated by the Health Professionals’ Council of SA over a complaint lodged by the president of the Association for Dietetics in South Africa. The hearing found in Noakes’ favour, and Harcombe and Zinn are associated with his Noakes Foundation. Noakes has praised Malhotra’s paper as a “brilliant, brilliant article”.

In 2019 Harcombe and Malhotra featured in a story in the Mail on Sunday on “the deadly propaganda of the statin deniers”. Harcombe and a third person discussed, Dr Malcolm Kendrick, are currently suing the paper for libel. The paper’s critical perspective was perhaps unexpected, given that novelties in health and diet advice are a perennial Mail favourite – indeed, Malhotra and Harcombe have both written pieces that have been published under the Mail banner (although it’s not clear for which paper). A possible explanation is the detail that Harcombe and Malhotra had been “invited to brief deputy Labour leader Tom Watson” – this, then, was another line of attack against Watson, already under pressure due to his disastrous investment in the “VIP abuse” hoaxer Carl Beech.

A Note on Disruptions at Vaccination Centres

From Reuters, last week:

A COVID-19 vaccination centre in Bristol was temporarily closed on Oct. 1 following a demonstration by protesters. It reopened as scheduled on Oct. 4. A video being shared on social media misleadingly claims the centre was “closed for the foreseeable future”.

…In the footage, which was recorded on Saturday, Oct. 1, a man in military uniform tells viewers that he and other protesters had “closed” a vaccine centre at the University of the West of England, Bristol (UWE).

…Similar posts can be seen on Facebook (here, here and here), Twitter (part one here and part two here), where together the videos have been viewed more than 118,000 times, and Instagram (here).

The “man in military uniform” (more specifically, combat gear) has been identified by John Bye as a former soldier named Dale Vincent. Vincent was reportedly arrested.

The action was led by Mark Sexton, a former police officer who got into the news last year after lodging a police complaint against vaccines minister Nadhim Zahawi. Sexton also spoke at a protest in London around the same time, as discussed by Reuters here (and noted by me at the time).

Sexton was not deterred by Vincent’s arrest, and there was a further disruption at a vaccination centre in Windsor a few days ago. Videos show several individuals telling security staff that they will be issued with “caution notices” in relation to a series of crimes – typical sovereign citizen pseudo-legalese babble. A distinctive figure dressed in red (and the only black man apparently involved) was one Dave Murphy, a urine-therapy enthusiast who goes by the name “Allegedly Dave”.

This time Sexton himself was arrested, along with his associate Steve Forsythe and Mikey P. Mikey P was featured in the Mail on Sunday last year, after the paper infiltrated a group called “Veterans 4 Freedom”, which was plotting to target vaccination centres – following the group’s exposure (one “cell” was so inept that it held a planning meeting in a pub garden), it reformed as “Global Veterans Alliance”. Videos from Windsor show a number of the disrupters were wearing berets, indicating their status as ex-military. They also all appear to be middle-aged – it is reasonable to suppose that these are men who have not adapted well to civilian life or status, or to the passage of years.

One detail from the Bristol protest noted by John Bye is that Sexton brandished his phone at police and told them that Aseem Malhotra was on the line and wanting to talk to them. Bye attempted to ask Malhotra about this on Twitter:

Given Mark Sexton’s claim that he had him on the phone during this incident, will @DrAseemMalhotra confirm whether:

1) He has been in contact with Mark Sexton
2) He asked Mark Sexton to let him talk to the police
3) He condones Mark Sexton and his group’s violent behaviour

No reply so far. More on Malhotra here.

The Legal Action Against the Daily Mail Publisher: Some Notes on Sources

A much discussed press release from the law firm Hamlins:

Today a group of people have launched a legal action against Associated Newspapers, publishers of The Daily Mail, The Mail on Sunday and the Mail Online.

The group behind this legal offensive are: Baroness Doreen Lawrence of Clarendon OBE; Prince Harry, The Duke of Sussex; Sir Elton John and David Furnish; Elizabeth Hurley; and Sadie Frost.

These individuals have become aware of compelling and highly distressing evidence that they have been the victims of abhorrent criminal activity and gross breaches of privacy by Associated Newspapers.

The allegations include bugging, corrupt payments to police officials, impersonation to gain medical details (Hamlins declines to use the word “blagging”) and accessing financial records illicitly. Further:

It is apparent to these individuals that the alleged crimes listed above represent the tip of the iceberg – and that many other innocent people remain unknowing victims of similar terrible and reprehensible covert acts.

In response, the Daily Mail has released its own statement, although rather than just put it online it is presented in the form of a story as told to the paper’s chief reporter, Sam Greenhill:

The publisher of the Daily Mail last night unambiguously rejected ‘groundless’ and ‘preposterous smears’ after legal claims were lodged by a group including Sir Elton John, Prince Harry and Baroness Doreen Lawrence.

…Associated Newspapers said: ‘In Doreen Lawrence’s case, not only are these appalling and utterly groundless smears, they appear to rely on the word of Jonathan Rees, a man jailed for seven years for attempting to pervert the course of justice by conspiring to plant cocaine on an innocent mother in a child custody battle. As such they are, at once, totally untrue and highly defamatory.

‘According to a recent article by investigative journalist Michael Gillard, Jonathan Rees was paid an unknown sum of money to make these allegations by private investigator and self-confessed phone hacker Gavin Burrows.

‘He was, in turn, being instructed by ‘a group of lawyers with a pot of money to buy dirt about the Mail’.

The article by Gillard (on his Substack The Upsetter) can be seen here. Here’s his version of the detail that the Mail has seized on:

Gavin Burrows is the private investigator who approached Rees. He confirmed to The Upsetter that he paid Rees to download his brain but will not say how much, where that money came from and the identity of the female lawyer who he said instructs him.

Rees has not signed a statement about the alleged bugging of the Lawrences but has given Burrows details to investigate further.

Of course, this suggests that Rees has a financial motive to come up with material that might be untrue, but that’s hardly the same thing saying that he has been “paid to make these allegations”. Burrows has responded on Twitter:

the only time I ever paid Jonathan Rees was for information in regards to another paper. The Mail are already lying and embellishing which just shows you how low they will go. I have received a warning they are gunning for me!

Burrows appeared in the news last year, after saying that he had been involved with phone-hacking Prince Harry’s former girlfriend Chelsy Davy and supplying information to the Sun and the News of the World.

Gillard also now writes:

Mail still not responded to The Upsetter’s questions but have relied on aspects of The Upsetter’s investigation into the bugging claims in an official statement from the newspaper denying any involvement with notorious private investigator Jonathan Rees.

It should be noted that Gillard is not associated with press reform activists, and indeed is quite scathing about them.

It is not currently clear to what extent, if any, Hamlins are relying on Rees’ testimony, or what their evidence is.

The suggestion that Mail titles may have been involved in phone hacking was raised at the Leveson Inquiry in 2011 in relation to 2007 story in the Mail on Sunday about Hugh Grant and Jemima Khan. As reported in the Telegraph:

Mr Grant told Lord Justice Leveson about a “bizarre, left field” story about him, which featured in the newspaper in February 2007.He added: “I would love to hear what the (Mail on Sunday’s) explanation of that is, if it wasn’t phone hacking.”

…Mr Grant said the story claimed that his relationship with then girlfriend Jemima Khan was on the rocks because of his “late night phone calls with a plummy-voiced studio executive”.…The only explanation he could think of was that messages had been left on his phone by an executive’s assistant, who had a voice which could be described as “plummy”.

Grant sued for libel following the 2007 article and the paper (perhaps tellingly) decided to settle rather than defend its story in court. However, on the subsequent phone-hacking allegation, Liz Hartley, the head of Associated Newspapers’ editorial legal services, provided a counter-statement to Leveson that can be seen here. Grant has now Tweeted that he did not find the Mail‘s explanation to be plausible.


Jonathan Rees, of course, is notorious as the main suspect in the unsolved murder of Daniel Morgan in 1987, and his brother Alastair states that “the fallout could be nasty” from Rees’s involvement in the new allegations. Ironically (and as previously discusssed here), in 2014 the Mail ran an article that expanded on Rees’s defence narrative in relation to the killing.

The Daily Mail‘s crime editor Stephen Wright recently brought Doreen Lawrence together with Alaistair and other figures in a campaign against corruption and incompetence within the Metropolitan Police, as I discussed here.