A neo-Nazi student who led an extreme right-wing group and promoted its “distorted and wicked cause” online has been jailed for seven years.
Andrew Dymock, 24, the middle-class son of academics, was found guilty in June of 15 charges, including 12 terrorism-related offences.
On Wednesday, Judge Mark Dennis QC found Dymock to be a dangerous offender, highlighting his continuing “state of denial”.
He sentenced Dymock to seven years in prison, with a further three years on extended licence.
The judge said Dymock had been an “active and committed proponent for right wing neo-Nazi extremism”.
He held a “prominent role” in now-banned System Resistance Network (SRN) group in 2017, promoting it on a website and Twitter.
In 2018, when he was “ousted” as a leader, he went on to form of a new group, the judge said.
The judge found that Dymock’s pursuit of the far right cause was “calculated, sophisticated” and designed to incite “gratuitous violence and hatred”.
He said: “The use of the internet meant that the reach of his message was widespread and uncontrolled,”
Judge Dennis told the defendant: “Having listened with care to your evidence over several days in the trial it is readily apparent that you are intelligent, well read, very articulate and motivated but a wholly misguided individual who, despite all the advantages of a good education and family upbrining chose at the age of 20 to take the path of dreadful bigotry, intolerance and hatred towards other members of our society solely on the basis of their race, creed or sexual orientation.
“In setting up and running the website and Twitter account for your extremist cause you were prepared to inflame such vile prejudices in others and to promote and encourage hatred and violence towards other human beings in furtherance of your distorted and wicked cause.”
While others were involved, the judge said it was clear Dymock was “a leader and not a follower”.
Dymock, who wore a pink Hawaiian-style shirt, waved to the public gallery as he was sent down.
He had been supported throughout his trial by his parents, Stella and Dr David Dymock, a professor of dentistry at Bristol University, with whom he lived in Bath, Somerset.
The court heard they had written to the judge asking for leniency ahead of the sentencing.
Defence lawyer Andrew Morris said they were “extremely worried” about the impact of jail on their son.
Judge Dennis said it was a “sad factor” in cases like this that the defendant was comparatively young.
“The collateral damage on conviction is huge for the family, who knew nothing about it or did not recognise the signs, and thought they had done everything they could to bring their child up in a responsible way,” he said.
Previously, the court heard how Dymock held longstanding extremist views dating back to when he was 17, and included a Google translation of the words “Kill all of the Jews”.
SRN was one of a small number of groups which filled a “dubious gap” left following the proscription of far-right group National Action, and was itself banned in 2020.
On October 8 2017, Dymock wrote about its creation on a right-wing webpage, saying SRN was “focused on building a group of loyal men, true to the cause of National Socialism and establishing the Fascist state through revolution”.
He promoted the SRN group, which aimed to “stir up a race war”, through a Twitter account and a website.
He also used online platforms to raise money for the organisation, which “preached zero-tolerance” to non-whites, Jewish and Muslim communities and described homosexuality as a “disease”.
Dymock was expelled from SRN in late February 2018, and formed another group before he was arrested in June of that year at Gatwick Airport as he tried to board a flight to the US.
Police found in his luggage extreme right-wing literature including Siege, an anthology of pro-Nazi essays written by James Mason, and Mein Kampf, along with clothing bearing neo-Nazi logos.
He also had books, flags and badges associated with the extreme right-wing in his bedroom at home and university.
Dymock, who at the time was studying politics at Aberystwyth University in Wales, denied being behind the SRN accounts, claiming he was set up by an ex-girlfriend, who had failed to recruit him to join banned terrorist group National Action (NA).
He denied being a neo-Nazi and told police: “In fact, I am bisexual but lean towards being homosexual, in direct conflict with Nazism.”
He went on to tell jurors that he had Adolf Hitler’s autobiographical manifesto, along with books on Satanism, for “research” on right-wing populism.
The jury found Dymock guilty of five charges of encouraging terrorism, two of fundraising for terrorism, four counts of disseminating terrorist publications, possessing a terrorist document, stirring up racial hatred and hatred based on sexual orientation, and possessing racially inflammatory material.
Prosecutor Jocelyn Ledward suggested the offending was made worse by the fact that Dymock communicated with other known extremists and used encrypted technology to avoid detection.
Detective Chief Superintendent Martin Snowden said: “Dymock saw himself as an influencer and spent a lot of time and effort maintaining his online presence, fundraising for his cause and encouraging others.
“Concerningly, Dymock never acknowledged his wrongful actions, but fortunately a jury brought him to justice and safeguarded the public in doing so.”
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