Banned ICT teacher replaces Nick Griffin as BNP leader
A former ICT teacher who was banned from the classroom has become the leader of the far-right British National Party.
The party's website said Adam Walker had been appointed acting chairman after leader Nick Griffin "stepped aside", two months after he lost the party's only seat at the European parliament.
Mr Walker, from Spennymoor in County Durham, was given a suspended sentence for verbally abusing three schoolboys, chasing them in his car and slashing the tyres on their bikes with a Stanley knife in 2011.
He was later banned from teaching for life by former education secretary Michael Gove. Last year, as a BNP organiser, he described Britain as a "multicultural s***hole".
In 2010, Mr Walker faced a General Teaching Council (GTC) disciplinary panel after he posted a series of claims about immigrants being "savages" and stating that Britain had become a "dumping ground for the filth of the third world" on a website while he should have been supervising pupils.
But, in a highly contentious decision, the GTC said he had not broken any rules to bar him from the profession.
The decision proved controversial, with the now defunct body facing accusations that it was failing to combat racism.
Mr Walker, who was a teacher at Houghton Kepier Sports College, County Durham, used a school laptop to post his views.
At the end of a drawn-out case the GTC said it was "troubled" by Mr Walker's postings, but found they were not "suggestive of intolerance".
Mr Walker was found guilty of a lesser charge of making personal use of a school computer during lessons. He was given a conditional registration order, which meant he could still apply for teaching jobs.
At the time, Chris Keates, general secretary of teaching union NASUWT, described the decision to allow him to continue teaching as "an absolutely staggering judgment".