Leicester

Fake monk Damon Kelly spread gay hate leaflets

Damon Kelly Image copyright PinkNews
Image caption Damon Kelly calls himself "Brother Damon Jonah Kelly" and dresses in monks robes

A fake monk who distributed leaflets condemning homosexuality and other "works of darkness" has been banned from doing so for five years.

Damon Kelly has been distributing the leaflets since 2012, but he was eventually charged for harassing a lesbian couple in the street.

He subsequently delivered a distressing letter to their home in Leicester.

The 54-year-old, from Northamptonshire, pleaded guilty at Leicester Magistrates Court to harassment without violence.

Kelly had also sent several letters to online newspaper PinkNews, describing them as "the Devil's disciples", although he has not been charged with any offences in relation to this.

Lisa Morris, from the Crown Prosecution Service in the East Midlands, said Kelly's right to free speech must be balanced with the need to protect the public.

"Damon Kelly has caused offence when distributing his leaflets," she said.

"The right of free speech is extremely important in our society, but when this crosses the line into harassment, it is important that the public is protected."

Image copyright PinkNews
Image caption Pink News has regularly reported on the activities of Damon Kelly

Kelly calls himself "Brother Damon Jonah Kelly" and dresses in monk's robes.

As well as condemning homosexuality, his leaflets condemn sex outside of marriage, contraception, "assisted fertilization", abortion, pornography, divorce, transgender people, euthanasia, atheism and humanism.

He has distributed them at various locations across England, including the East Midlands, Brighton, Cambridgeshire and the West Midlands.

Many people have reported him to the police after being upset and offended by them.

The leaflets were described by witnesses as "vile", "offensive" and "upsetting".

Punishment to protect the public

Damon Kelly was given a five-year Criminal Behaviour Order prohibiting him from:

  • Distributing unsolicited material about religious, sexual or reproductive topics to any residential, commercial or academic address in England and Wales.
  • Calling at any residential premises in England and Wales, whether by doorbell, knocking or any other means, for the purpose of distributing such material, without prior permission of the occupier.

He was also given a 12-month community order requiring him to do 170 hours of unpaid work and ordered to pay a £60 victim surcharge.

The CPS has asked people to contact their local police force if they see Kelly breaching the Criminal Behaviour Order.

"It is important that communities are aware that he has been banned by the courts from these activities," said Ms Morris.

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