Neil Erikson attended Gold Coast ‘recruitment event’ for the Liberal National party | Australia news
Far-right ringleader Neil Erikson was certainly one of three extremists who attended a “conservative recruitment occasion” for the Liberal National party at a personal residence on the Gold Coast final 12 months.
Erikson, who claims another person paid for his flights from Melbourne to attend the occasion, is likely one of the founders of the anti-Islam United Patriots Entrance and has been convicted for inciting contempt against Muslims after he staged a mock beheading of a model.
An e-mail seen by Guardian Australia describes the occasion as an “conservative recruitment occasion” for the Queensland-based Liberal Nationwide celebration, which was held in early June 2018.
Erikson flew from Melbourne to Brisbane for the perform, which was additionally attended by fellow members of the far-right Scott Moerland and Ricky Turner. Moerland is now working as a Queensland candidate for Fraser Anning’s Conservative Nationwide celebration.
Anning got here beneath hearth earlier this 12 months when he billed taxpayers to attend a far right rally in St Kilda alongside Erikson and fellow founding father of the United Patriots Entrance Blair Cottrell.
Visitor audio system on the Queensland recruitment drive included David Goodwin – a former LNP Senate candidate and former president of the Younger Nationals and the Younger LNP – and Victorian conservative Elliot Watson.
On the perform, which is known to have been held at a personal residence, Goodwin and Watson each spoke about the necessity to recruit extra conservatives into the celebration.
Watson, who’s reportedly certainly one of a number of Mormons appointed as party delegates within the Victorian Liberal Celebration, is credited with taking part in a “main function” in recruiting conservatives to the Victorian department of the celebration.
The Victorian department of the celebration has been riven by factional divisions, amid claims that an rebel group led by hardliner Marcus Bastiaan is pushing the Liberals too far to the right.
Membership types for the LNP have been obtainable to attendees on the Gold Coast occasion, however each Erikson and a Liberal supply who attended say he was not requested to hitch the celebration.
A Liberal attendee on the occasion confirmed that Goodwin spoke to Erikson about his conviction for his anti-Islam protest, however mentioned the three males have been “misplaced” on the occasion, which was attended by at the least 40 individuals, of which about 5 have been LNP members.
“I’m not certain who invited them, and I’m not certain why they have been there,” the supply mentioned, saying most people invited had shared “household values”. The group are additionally understood to have prayed collectively.
A spokesman for the celebration mentioned it was not an official LNP occasion.
“All members of the LNP are inspired to advertise membership and encourage others to hitch the celebration,” he mentioned.
“Nevertheless, there are strict guidelines round how that is finished, together with that members should not pay the charges of anybody who will not be a member of the family, and should not harm the celebration or convey it into disrepute.”
Erikson has claimed on social media that he needs to wreck the Liberal celebration as a result of he believes the Coalition is answerable for shutting down the Fb pages of members of the far proper within the wake of the Christchurch bloodbath.
On Tuesday, Liberal MP Andrew Hastie was forced to deny he had met Erikson, after his colleague Ian Goodenough claimed that that they had spoken to him at a gathering in assist of white South African farmers held in Perth final 12 months.
The opposition chief, Invoice Shorten, mentioned the celebration was “riddled with far proper extremists” after two Victorian candidates stood down from the celebration for anti Muslim and homophobic social media posts.