Exclusive: National Action co-founder Ben Raymond tells followers extremist designs can be ‘comfortably displayed on any occasion’. The co-founder of a far-right terrorist group has set up an online business selling neo-Nazi T-shirts, The Independent can reveal. Ben Raymond, who started National Action in 2013, distanced himself from the group after it became the first far-right association to be banned under British terror laws. More than a dozen people have been jailed for membership of the organisation, and other followers mounted terror plots, but Raymond has never been prosecuted. He can now be revealed as the operator of an online retailer called Blackguard, which sells T-shirts and posters covered in neo-Nazi designs. A post on the retailer’s Twitter account said its mission was “esoteric [mystical Nazism] design with professional style”. (…) The T-shirts on sale display swastikas, swords, guns, the Nazi black sun symbol and references to occult Nazism. Some feature figures including the Nazi ideologue Savitri Devi, who was among the founders of the World Union of National Socialists, and cult leader Charles Manson. An expert told The Independent the eclectic images “fit perfectly with the cults that neo-Nazi groups and the far right have developed”. (…) Dr Jackson said the designs would be readable to an “online world” of white nationalists familiar with the symbolic meanings behind them. When a Twitter follower suggested a design depicting a soldier with prominent SS symbols, the Blackguard account replied: “I will need to make it a little more circumspect.” Raymond created much of National Action’s propaganda before it was banned as a terrorist group in 2016, and court cases heard that he designed stickers for splinter organisations that were set up afterwards. Dr Jackson said National Action had attempted to create a “new look and style” for neo-Nazism in the UK, following similar pushes by international groups including the US Atomwaffen Division. Alongside the neo-Nazi T-shirt designs, Blackguard’s Instagram page contained references to the eco-fascist “pine tree gang” movement and Asatru paganism, which has been co-opted by the far right. The account’s handle was “Blackguard graphic design” but the name displayed was Benito Raymondo. Benito is also the first name of Italian fascist dictator Mussolini. Raymond and Alex Davies founded National Action as university students in 2013, recruiting young and vulnerable followers with online propaganda, demonstrations and publicity stunts.

via independent: Terrorist group founder now running online neo-Nazi T-shirt business