Viscount denies Gina Miller Facebook threat

image source, PA/Getty
image captionRhodri Colwyn Philipps allegedly posted that someone should "run over" campaigner Gina Miller

A viscount has denied threatening Gina Miller, the woman behind the Brexit legal challenge, in a "menacing" Facebook post.

Rhodri Colwyn Philipps, 50, the 4th Viscount St Davids, allegedly called Ms Miller a "troublesome first generation immigrant" in the online post.

He denies three charges of making malicious communications, which also refer to a family from Luton.

His lawyer said the comments were "taken out of context".

Ms Miller fronted a successful legal challenge which, on 3 November, ruled the government must consult Parliament before formally beginning the Brexit process.

Westminster Magistrates' Court heard Lord St Davids posted on 7 November 2016: "£5,000 for the first person to 'accidentally' run over this bloody troublesome first generation immigrant."

The post allegedly added: "If this is what we should expect from immigrants, send them back to their stinking jungles."

'Ghastly insult'

The viscount is also accused of posting two messages on 11 September, in which he allegedly referred to immigrants as "monkeys".

Reacting to a story about the Sube family, who were involved in a row over housing, he said: "Please will someone smoke this ghastly insult to this country, why should I pay tax to feed these monkeys?"

Andrew Rinker, defending, said: "I think a lot of these comments are taken completely out of context, he calls his own daughter a little monkey."

Ms Miller is expected to give evidence when Lord St Davids, from Knightsbridge in London, faces trial on 10 July.

Guyana-born Ms Miller, 52, has previously spoken of online abuse she has received since spearheading the legal challenge.

She said in a radio interview that becoming the face of the court battle had resulted in her being "apparently the most hated woman in Britain".

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