Five things we know about Jo Cox's assailant

A 52-year-old man named Thomas Mair has been arrested and charged with the murder of Britain’s Labour Party MP Jo Cox.

Published: 18th June 2016 09:17 AM  |   Last Updated: 18th June 2016 10:27 AM   |  A+A-


A 52-year-old man named Thomas Mair has been arrested and charged with the murder of Britain’s Labour Party MP Jo Cox. Details of his motive for the assassination are still being investigated by Scotland Yard. What do we know about this man?

1. Thomas Mair is said to be a reclusive gardener from Birstall, a metropolitan village in Yorkshire, 6 km from the city of Leeds. He lived in a state housing project on the edge of Birstall.

2. Mair has had long ties with the neo-Nazi movement and white supremacists. According to the Southern Poverty Law Center, a U.S.-based civil rights group, Mair was a supporter of the National Alliance, "the most dangerous and violent neo-Nazi group in the United States for decades." Mair also subscribed to a pro-apartheid publication from South Africa, SA Patriot. He was one of its earliest subscribers and supporters.

3. He had an interest in anarchist weapons literature. He made online purchases of survivalist weapons guides and other extremist materials from the National Alliance. Among the publications he bought were "Chemistry of Powder and Explosives" and "Improvised Munitions Handbook."

4. He had a history of mental illness. His brother, Scott Mair has said he has been ill in the past but was not violent. Neighbours said Thomas Mair was reclusive but showed no tendencies to violence.

5. Mair attacked Jo Cox as she emerged from her car. Mair stabbed Cox repeatedly with a hunting knife and shot her as she lay on the ground. Witnesses said Mair shouted "Britain first!" several times as he shot and stabbed Cox.

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