The man suspected of killing British parliamentarian Jo Cox on Thursday was allegedly a long-time member of an American neo-Nazi organization, the Southern Poverty Law Center reported on its website.
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Cox, a Labour Party lawmaker, was stabbed and shot on a street in her constituency of Betley and Spen, near Leeds. She was pronounced dead shortly after the attack. Her alleged attacker, Thomas Mair, 52, was arrested close to the scene of the attack.
According to the SPLC, which monitors hate groups and promotes tolerance in the United States, documents in its possession indicate that Mair was a decades-long member of the National Alliance, once the leading neo-Nazi organization in the U.S.
The documents also indicate that Mair purchased a do-it-yourself manual with instructions for building a pistol from the organization in 1999.
The SPLC published copies of invoices, indicating that Mair had purchased goods amounting to just over $620 from the NA and its printing imprint National Vanguard Press. He bought subscriptions for periodicals, including a magazine called "Free Speech," and manuals about “Chemistry of Powder & Explosives,” “Incendiaries,” and a work called “Improvised Munitions Handbook."
The latter manual included instructions for manufacturing a pipe pistol. According to eyewitnesses to the murder of Cox, the killer used a pistol that looked either home-made or antique.
Mair also subscribed to a South African magazine titled "S.A. Patriot," according to the Daily Telegraph on Friday. The magazine, the paper says, is published by a pro-apartheid group called the White Rhino Club, which describes its editorial stance as being opposed to “multi-cultural societies” and “expansionist Islam.”
The group reportedly described Mair as “one of the earliest subscribers and supporters of 'S.A. Patriot,'” in a January 2006 blog.
According to at least one eyewitness, the killer shouted "Britian first" before stabbing and shooting Cox. The reference is to next week's referendum over whether Britain should leave the European Union or remain a member. "Britain first" is one of the slogans of the leave campaign.