Anti-lockdown protester spares jail for abusing BBC Newsnight editor

BBC journalist Nicholas Watt was pursued by anti-lockdown protesters in London (Image: Getty/PA)

BBC journalist Nicholas Watt has been pursued by anti-lockdown protesters in London (Image: Getty/PA)

An anti-lockdown protester who has stalked a BBC journalist and called him a traitor has escaped jail.

Joseph Olswang, 39, was part of a group demonstrating against Covid restrictions near Downing Street last June when he ran into Newsnight’s political editor Nicholas Watt.

Footage showed them shouting insults in the face of Mr Watt, who was wearing a BBC lanyard.

He was forced to run through the mob past a line of police officers as people shouted abusively at him.

A court heard Olswang “yelled and yelled” at Mr Watt, calling him a “f***ing c***”.

He pleaded guilty at a previous hearing to using threatening and abusive language to harass Mr Watt.

Olswang was also found guilty of the same offense against Pc Agnes Matvejeva after she called her a “brown shirt Nazi” and “evil scum”.

Joseph Olswang (left) and Alexander Peat arrive at Westminster Magistrates' Court in London, where they face charges over footage shared on social media showing protesters carrying Newsnight political editor Nicholas Watt near the Downing Street during an anti-lockdown protest at 14 Picture date: Thursday September 30, 2021. PA Photo. See PA story COURTS Watt. Photo credit should read: Yui Mok/PA Wire

Joseph Olswang, 39, was part of the group that gathered in Westminster on June 14 (Image: PA)

District Judge Daniel Sternberg called his behavior “disgraceful” and imposed a 20-week prison sentence, suspended for 18 months.

“They were among a group of people who posed as protesters but did little more than harass journalists and police officers – who went about their business – and made their lives really, really uncomfortable,” he said.

“It was clearly part of a series of disorderly events that you and others had a hand in creating at a sensitive time in Whitehall and outside Downing Street.”

Olswang was also banned from Whitehall and Parliament Square for 18 months.

Five others are due to appear in court later this month on charges of the same public order offence.

Get in touch with our news team by emailing us at

For more stories like this, Visit our news page. Anti-lockdown protester spares jail for abusing BBC Newsnight editor

Justin Scacco

InternetCloning is an automatic aggregator of the all world’s media. In each content, the hyperlink to the primary source is specified. All trademarks belong to their rightful owners, all materials to their authors. If you are the owner of the content and do not want us to publish your materials, please contact us by email – The content will be deleted within 24 hours.

Related Articles

Back to top button