Accused Jo Cox Killer: My Name is 'Death to Traitors'

Thomas Mair is defiant in court
By Newser Editors and Wire Services
Posted Jun 18, 2016 5:37 AM CDT
Accused Killer of Jo Cox Defiant in Court
Staff from Britain's opposition Labour Party stand together before placing floral tributes for their colleague Jo Cox.   (Matt Dunham)

The accused killer of British lawmaker Jo Cox gave his name as "Death to traitors, freedom for Britain" in his first court appearance. Thomas Mair, 52, made his defiant statement Saturday in Westminster Magistrates' Court in London. West Yorkshire Police charged Mair overnight with murder, inflicting grievous bodily harm, possession of a firearm with intent to commit a crime, and other gun charges, the AP reports. Labour Party lawmaker Cox was killed Thursday after getting out of her car in the town of Birstall in her home constituency. She was 41. Vigils have been held across the country in her memory and Parliament has been recalled Monday to honor her.

President Obama called her husband and "offered his sincere condolences on behalf of the American people to Mr Cox and his two young children, as well as to her friends, colleagues and constituents," a White House statement said. "The president noted that the world is a better place because of her selfless service to others, and that there can be no justification for this heinous crime, which robbed a family, a community, and a nation of a dedicated wife, mother and public servant." Campaigning ahead of Thursday's referendum on whether Britain should leave the European Union has been suspended since the shooting. (Mair is believed to have connections to a white supremacy group in the US.)

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