Man accused of assaulting chief medical officer Chris Whitty must wear electronic tag 1

Man accused of assaulting chief medical officer Chris Whitty must wear electronic tag

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Man accused of assaulting chief medical officer Chris Whitty must wear electronic tag

  • Trial adjourned for a man accused of assaulting chief medic Chris Whitty
  • Jonathan Chew, 24, allegedly grabbed Mr Whitty after an antivaxx march 
  • His trial was put off for a second time today because of delay serving papers
  • Mr Chew must wear an electronic tag to ensure he abides by his bail conditions


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A man accused of assaulting Chris Whitty has been put on an electronic tag to ensure he is abiding by his bail conditions.

Jonathan Chew, 24, stands accused of assaulting the Chief Medical Officer and obstructing a police officer at an antivaxx march he attended alongside his friend Lewis Hughes on June 27 last year.

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The pair allegedly spotted the respected medic, grabbed him around the shoulders and yelled ‘oi,oi’ – as they poked their tongues out at the camera.

A video of the pair was widely shared on social media.

Mr Chew’s trial was put off for a second time today because his lawyers were not given paperwork until ten minutes before the hearing started, and it was decided that would prevent him having a fair trial.

At the hearing at Westminster Magistrates Court today, magistrate Paul Goldspring told Mr Chew he had ‘concerns’ he was not actually living at his given address in Brentwood, Essex, due to problems establishing where he lived at earlier hearings. 

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Jonathan Chew, 24, outside Westminster Magistrates' Court in London, where he is appearing accused of assaulting England's chief medical officer Professor Chris Whitty

Jonathan Chew, 24, outside Westminster Magistrates’ Court in London, where he is appearing accused of assaulting England’s chief medical officer Professor Chris Whitty

Still taken from video appearing to show Professor Chris Whitty, England's chief medical officer, being harassed by two men in a park

Still taken from video appearing to show Professor Chris Whitty, England’s chief medical officer, being harassed by two men in a park

Mr Chew insisted he had not been given papers and body-worn video evidence the police said they had served at his address.

He will now be monitored on an electronic tag between 9pm and 4am until his trial on January 27.

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Mr Goldspring told him: ‘You may have gathered I am very reluctant to adjourn your case.

‘You have a right to a fair trial and eventually the court’s patience may not be in your favour.

‘I have concerns, because the police have concerns, that you are not actually living at the address you say you are living at, and you will now be monitored on an electronic tag between 9pm and 4am.’

Mr Chew pictured outside Westminster Magistrates Court following an earlier hearing in July last year

Mr Chew pictured outside Westminster Magistrates Court following an earlier hearing in July last year

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Earlier Mr Chew’s lawyer Rabah Kherbane claimed his learning difficulties may impede his ability to understand and follow proceedings, but that claim was rejected by the chief magistrate.

But the judge said Mr Chew had showed a ‘remarkable’ understanding of complex legal matters at earlier hearings. 

Mr Chew, who has a diagnosis of ADHD, autism, conduct disorder and a sleep disorder, was criticised for his behaviour when he last attended court by video link in his dressing gown.

As he sat outside the dock in blue jeans, a grey t-shirt and a mask today, Mr Chew continued to interrupt proceedings – saying prosecution evidence was ‘all a lie man’.

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Mr Chew said ‘naaah’ when asked to give his phone number to the court at the end of the hearing and was once again told he would have to leave if his behaviour did not improve. 

Prosecutor Sam Trefgarne told the court the trial could go ahead today because the case against Mr Chew was ‘evidentially very straightforward’ and captured on video, but his plea was ultimately rejected.

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