Man who sent Anna Soubry death threats jailed after warning 'Cox was first you're next'


Anna Soubry, was sent a “sickening” letter in the post warning her that she was “next”, by Alden Bryce Barlow, 55, from Doncaster. The letter arrived at Ms Soubry’s constituency office in Broxtowe, Nottingham, on October 14 this year and was opened by a member of staff, the Crown Prosecution Service (CPS) said.

Barlow admitted sending a letter conveying a threatening message and was sentenced to 12 months in jail at Sheffield Crown Court.

He was also given a 10-year restraining order against Ms Soubry, who is standing as a candidate for The Independent Group for Change (TIGfC) in the upcoming December 12 General Election.

Barlow was traced using fingerprint analysis and CCTV from the post office counter in Doncaster where he posted the letter.

Ms Soubry, leader of the TIGfC, was previously a Conservative and had several ministerial jobs under David Cameron.

Chief Crown prosecutor Gerry Wareham called the note “sickening” and “ominous” and described it as an “attack on democracy”.

He said: “Ms Soubry and her staff in the constituency office understandably found the message deeply disturbing and highly offensive.

“I hope the sentence Barlow received today is of some comfort to Ms Soubry and her colleagues and a deterrent to anyone else contemplating such despicable actions against a parliamentary representative or candidate.”

Mrs Cox was Labour MP for Batley and Spen when she was stabbed and shot outside a constituency surgery in Birstall, West Yorkshire, in 2016.

The attack took place the lead up to the 2016 EU referendum vote in the UK.

Following the murder, Mrs Cox’s husband Brendan said she would want people “to unite to fight against the hatred that killed her.”

In November 2016, Thomas Mair was jailed for life after being found guilty of the murder of the Labour MP Mrs Cox.

The 53-year-old shot and stabbed to death the mother-of-two and shouted “Britain first” in the attack.

Prosecutors said Mair was motivated by hate and his crimes were “nothing less than acts of terrorism”.

In the aftermath of her murder, Labour leader Mr Corbyn said the country would be “in shock at the horrific murder”, describing the MP as a “much-loved colleague”.

He added: “Jo died doing her public duty at the heart of our democracy, listening to and representing the people she was elected to serve.

“In the coming days, there will be questions to answer about how and why she died.

“But for now all our thoughts are with Jo’s husband Brendan and their two young children. They will grow up without their mum, but can be immensely proud of what she did, what she achieved and what she stood for.”

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