Australian Defence League

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Australian Defence League
AbbreviationADL
SuccessorPatriots Defence League Australia
Formation2009
FounderRalph Cerminara
Founded atSydney
TypeFar-right
PurposeAnti-Islamism
Location
  • Sydney, Australia
President
Chris Rothwell
President, Western Sydney
Nathan Abela

The Australian Defence League (ADL) is a militant far-right, white nationalist street gang. The group is anti-Islam, and has been involved in making terrorist threats, abusing, stalking and doxxing Muslim Australians. The gang was founded in Sydney in 2009 by convicted criminal Ralph Cerminara.[1]

Cerminera is a recidivist with a significant criminal record, including convictions for assault, high-range drink-driving and breaching apprehended violence orders. In 2019 Cerminera was jailed for at least nine months after being found guilty of assaulting and threatening his neighbors in March 2018.[2]

History[edit]

The ADL was founded in 2009 a registered not-for-profit organisation. They were founded as an offshoot of the English Defence League.

Stalking, verbal abuse and harassment[edit]

In 2014, the group came to national attention after it was revealed that ADL members and followers had been stalking and photographing Muslim women on public transport, verbally abusing Muslims, displaying anti-Islamic posters outside mosques, and threatening to blow up an Islamic school.[3]

Later in 2014, in what police believe was retaliation for the bomb threat, the home of Nathan Abela, former President of the ADL, was fired upon.[3] Following pressure by people associated with the #illridewithyou campaign, Facebook shut down pages of ADL.[4]

On 22 December 2014, two members of the ADL, including Cerminara, were involved in a brawl outside Sydney's Lakemba mosque, arrested, and charged with affray and behaving in an offensive manner. They were subsequently convicted and jailed for five weeks.[5][6]

Bendigo mosque protests[edit]

Beginning in 2014, The organisation was involved in the Voices of Bendigo and Stop the Mosques Bendigo protests. The group was one of a number of far-right Islamophobic groups, including the Q Society, Reclaim Australia, True Blue Crew and the United Patriots Front, that opposed the construction of a $3 million mosque and Islamic community centre in Bendigo, Victoria.[7][8]

See also[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ White, Alex. "The pro-white gangs spreading race hate across Australia". The Herald Sun. News International. Retrieved 30 March 2019.
  2. ^ Thompson, Angus. "Ex-head of Australian right-wing group posted anti-Islamic material online in breach of court order". The Sydney Morning Herals. Fairfax. Retrieved 30 March 2019.
  3. ^ a b Rubinsztein-Dunlop, Sean. "Tensions between Australian Defence League and Muslim community reach violent new heights". Australian Broadcasting Corporation. Retrieved 3 December 2017.
  4. ^ Kimmorley, Sarah. "Facebook Has Shut Down The Australian Defence League's Racist Page On Complaints From #illridewithyou Supporters". Business Insider. Retrieved 3 December 2017.
  5. ^ "Australian Defence League leader Ralph Cerminara refused bail over Lakemba brawl". Australian Broadcasting Corporation. Retrieved 3 December 2017.
  6. ^ Hall, Bianca. "Street fights and 'internet vigilantes': Inside Australia's anti-Islam movement". Sydney Morning Herald. Fairfax. Retrieved 30 March 2019.
  7. ^ "Sociel Cohesion In Bendigo" (PDF). Victorian Multicultural Commission. Victorian Government. Retrieved 30 March 2019.
  8. ^ "Far-right group spreading anti-mosque message in Bendigo". theage.com. 23 June 2014. Retrieved 15 January 2016.
  9. ^ "Romper Stomper reboot is a compelling investigation into Australia's extremist politics". ABC News. 30 December 2017. Retrieved 14 January 2018.