In the run up to the EU referendum this June, we are undoubtedly going to be hit with a lot of spin from both sides. But it’s gonna be hard for anyone to top The Sun who last week suggested we could put an end to such heinous crimes as murder and voodoo if we vote ‘out‘.
In one of those tabloid articles that blurs the line between actual news and satire, the best-selling paper ran an article with the headline JIHADIS, VOODOO, MURDER, SEX TRAFFICKING… WE CAN STOP THEM ALL IF WE QUIT THE EU, SAYS CRIME EXPERT.
The article is written by criminologist and author Richard Hoskins (pictured) who goes on to claim that the EU poses ‘the greatest threat since the rise of Hitler’s Nazis.’
Mr Hoskins is by all accounts a respected criminologist and he informs readers that he is ‘Britain’s only multicultural expert on the National Crime Agency database.’ He goes on to explain that he has investigated ritual killings – including the Torso in the Thames case – and global sex trafficking crimes.
He seems to think this makes him an authority on international politics and he has a simple solution to stop the country becoming ‘riddled with dangerous criminals intent on destroying everything Britain stands for.’ Quit the EU.
According to Mr Hoskins, free movement across Europe means one thing – more dangerous criminals coming into the continent from overseas and thus into Britain and it’s ‘utterly naive‘ to think otherwise.
‘The most naive people I ever met were EU luvvies‘, he says.
This is despite the fact that statistically there has been no great rise in crime in the last 15-20 years, the percentage of foreigners in prison is reflective of the percentage of foreigners in the country as a whole, and research has found no evidence of a link between immigration and crime.
The article is full of baseless claims that are steeped in the current xenophobic rhetoric – popular in numerous tabloids – that links migration from outside Europe with criminal behaviour and believes that the freedom of movement across EU countries will ultimately lead to Britain being ‘flooded‘ with criminals.
Although he says he is an internationalist who loves other cultures and wants to help refugees, Mr Hoskins talks of migrants and criminals in the same breath as if they are interchangeable. He describes how he has watched them ‘seep into Europe‘ over the years.
He also claims that there are 50,000 jihadists ‘on Britain’s doorstep‘ – ten times the amount given by Europol – and asserts that there will be more terrorist atrocities carried out in the UK. Without anything resembling evidence to support these claims, it’s worrying that a mainstream newspaper is printing this sort of scaremongering misinformation from someone who is presented to the readers as an authority source.
Essentially this is no expert in the fields of politics or migration speaking. It’s a specialist criminologist who has been given a platform to air his personal viewpoint which just so happens to chime with The Sun‘s anti-EU stance. He uses no facts to back up any of what he says. The only factual parts of the article are when he details criminal cases he has worked on, but these are incidental to the points he is making.
It’s tempting to dismiss this ridiculous article as a joke. The sub-editor may well have been having a laugh to themselves as they passed it fit to print. But ultimately there will be many people who read it and take it as truth, and that’s no laughing matter.
The original Sun article available here.
Tabloid Corrections Facebook page: here.