French comic at the centre of the Nicolas Anelka anti-Semitism row is banned from Britain

The Daily Mail - 03 February 2014

The controversial French ‘comedian’ at the centre of the Nicolas Anelka anti-Semitism row was last night banned from coming  to Britain.

Dieudonne M’bala M’bala, who has convictions for inciting racial hatred, said he would come to London to support the West  Bromwich Albion striker, who faces a disciplinary hearing for carrying out a ‘quenelle’ salute during a December match against West Ham.

But the Home Office has now given the performer persona non grata status, warning he is not allowed into the country. 

Airlines and other transport companies including the Eurostar high speed train service between Paris and London, as well as border officials, have been told that Dieudonne is an ‘excluded’ individual.

All can be fined up to £10,000 if the ban is breached. 

A Home Office spokesman said: ‘We can confirm that Mr Dieudonne is subject to an exclusion order. 

‘The Home Secretary will seek to exclude an individual from the UK if she considers that there are public policy or public security reasons to do so’.

Many of Diedonne’s show were banned in France last month because of fear that he would mock the Second World War Holocaust.  

Anelka has been charged by the Football Association after performing a quenelle when he scored a goal against West Ham on December 28. He denies any wrongdoing. 

Instead, the 34-year-old player said he was expressing his support for ‘my friend’ Dieudonne, insisting he is ‘neither anit-Semitic nor racist’.

Dieudonne has defamation convictions for inciting racial hatred but insists the gesture is simply anti-establishment. 

Last week more than half a million pounds in allegedly laundered cash was found in Diedonne’s home near Paris. 

Official searches were sanctioned by a French magistrate investigating money laundering and false tax declarations.

Investigators also believe that Dieudonne sent the equivalent of more than £380,000 in cash to Cameroon, where his extended family live, since 2009.

Dieudonne M’bala M’bala (right) wanted to travel to the UK to support the West Bromwich Albion footballer (left)

And they allege that a production company owned by his wife, Noemie Montagne, bought one of his properties for £450,000 in cash when he owed the government £740,000.

But Diedonne’s lawyer, Jacques Verdier, said the French were involved in an ‘organised hunt for Dieudonne’.

Mr Verdier said his client was by  no means anti-Semitic and ‘does not support the Third Reich.’

Dieudonne’s last visit to Britain was in 2010 when he appeared in front of a large of audience of mainly French expatriates at a London theatre.

He argues that his act is full of risque humour about a range of minority groups, including black people and Muslims.

Dieudonne, who was brought up as a Christian, said that one of the reasons Anelka is being made a scapegoat in Britain is because he is a black Muslim who drives a Ferrari.

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