As a youngster, I was taught that whenever anybody gave me a gift (whether I liked it or not, and yes, I’m thinking of a particularly ugly raincoat I received for one birthday, not that I’m still bitter), a thank-you note was in order.
So here goes.
Thank you ever so much for the video you sent the court on 20 April, a week prior to John Paterson’s trial date. I hadn’t realised what an amazing impact it had, until I listened to one of your friend Andy Devine’s interminable rants a couple of days ago.
I have to admit I dozed through a lot of his waffle about wet ink signatures and the Fraud Act (which Devine claims not to believe in, but what ho), but I woke right up when he finally got to the meat of the matter:
First of all, when Angela Disney-Power made John…an affidavit video, explaining who these people was, completely discredited [redacted], Steve Martin…Karen Irving. Completely discredited all those people, they decided that, uh, Joy Dykes (Paterson’s defence barrister) said to John, she was meant to meet him on the Thursday…before the case which was on the Monday, the 26th of April, which is a Monday.…
[Long, incoherent rant about how everyone was in on it, and they wouldn’t let Devine be Paterson’s power of attorney, and they are all a bunch of stinky poo-poo-pants, and they wouldn’t let Edward Ellis into the court or give him habeas corpus, and something about a “Mu’ad Dib challenge”, which sounds to me like some sort of Sovereign Citizen swimming contest, but what do I know?]
Then, at long blessed last:
The judge and the barrister worked it to say, “Oh, we’ve looked at the video now”—’cos they wasn’t going to listen to the video, by the way—they wasn’t going to listen to the video, but John instructed them to listen to the video.
[That’s your video he’s talking about Angie, in case you weren’t sure.]
And after Joy Dykes had listened to the video, she said to him, “You don’t need to come on Thursday, because we’re going for an acquittal. We’re going for an acquittal, John, so we don’t need to come and get the papers off you, ‘cos we’re going for an acquittal”. That’s what Joy Dykes said to John Paterson.
And then come the Monday, John went in, still gave her the documents, he did give her the documents, he presented Joy Dykes with the draft order and the Mu’ad Dib challenge, with his wet ink signature on, and a stamp, a red fox stamp at that, and with his God-given seal on it.
A red fox seal, no less! How impressive is that?
And she totally ignored it, and said, “Take a plea! Take a plea…for a lesser charge”.(https://www.facebook.com/andrew.devine.3532/videos/110941484529121 for anybody feeling masochistic enough to listen to the whole sticky, woolly ball of wax.)
Reading between the specks of phlegm and cigarette ash, it seems fairly clear, Angela, that your “affidavit video” had an actual impact on the court! Go you!
Granted, it might not have been quite the impact you had in mind, but we can’t have everything.
Now, as you will no doubt have surmised (or I hope you have, hard to say with you), I didn’t get to give evidence in court, because before the trial could begin, Paterson entered his guilty plea in exchange for the Crown putting aside two of the charges against him.
However, I did eventually have a chance to share at least some of my experience as Paterson’s stalking victim.
You see, an important part of the court process is something called a “Victim Personal Statement”. This was a statement each of Paterson’s three victims wrote, spelling out the impacts which Paterson’s behaviour had on us—and while I haven’t seen what the others wrote, I can tell you that mine was not pretty.
Since we’re being all friendly here (well, I am at least), I can tell you that I don’t like to think of myself as a victim of anything, but three years of intensive stalking, including many, many threats made in videos, and a grand total of 855 emailed threats…well, it all took its toll. I might share more of my feelings on that at a later date, because really, this is a thank-you note and I don’t want to go all emo on you.
I did make the point that during the three years in which he’d stalked me, Paterson had shared his ugly, hateful emails and videos with dozens of others, such as Devine, Matthew Taylor, Kaley Einav, and, well, you. I told the court that this had amplified the effects of his stalking and harassment, as it meant that he was spreading his hatred and threats to a much wider audience.
This meant that instead of just having to be afraid that one unhinged person was planning to harm me, I had to be on the lookout for dozens. I pointed out in my statement that this had contributed significantly to the stress and fear I already felt after receiving hundreds of death threats from Paterson.
I sent my VPS to the court in the week before Paterson was sentenced. As I say, I hadn’t given evidence in court, so when she read my statement it was really up to the judge to decide whether Paterson’s friends might actually be willing to take up arms on his behalf, harassing and denigrating me on his say-so. Under normal circumstances, she’d have had no way of determining whether any of you would really do such a thing.
But your “affidavit” video was very convincing! I confess I didn’t watch it in full until last night, but when I did, I realised I needed to thank you.
As Devine said, it was touch and go whether anybody would actually listen to it, but apparently Paterson insisted his legal team watch it, and because it would have been considered “evidence”, the CPS team would have seen it, and they probably thought the judge ought to give it a listen too.
I’m sure she appreciated the extra insight it gave her into the circles in which Paterson travels. Or did travel, at least.
I especially liked the bit where you told the court that you had “two high-level researchers identify El Coyote”—one in South America, no less! Now, you and I both know that was just Mad Charlotte, but still, it sounded very impressive. And the way you somehow managed to work the names of the other victims into your statement, claiming that we were all part of a conspiracy against you? Masterful!
I’m certain the court must have been very impressed.
Now, I would not like to guess whether your affidavit video actually had an impact on the sentence Paterson received. I wasn’t in the room, and I have no idea what the judge said in her sentencing remarks.
But really, it’s the thought that counts, isn’t it?
And so, I’d like to offer you my thanks, and a hearty handshake. No, better make that an elbow bump—we’re still in a pandemic, after all.