The Apprentice’s Lord Alan Sugar was sent three vile letters from 70-year-old Patrick Gomes, who was convicted of religiously-aggravated harassment, putting those targeted in fear of violence
A pensioner has been jailed after sending The Apprentice star Lord Alan Sugar vile anti-semitic messages, including one that declared he wanted to round all Jewish people in Britain into camps.
Patrick Gomes, 70, who called himself ‘the biggest “f**king Jew hater in the whole of Britain’, has been sentenced today to three years and six months in prison at Chelmsford Crown Court, after sending three anti-Semitic letters to Lord Sugar between October and December 2018.
The three letters, two of which were duplicates, were addressed directly to the business tycoon and sent to one of his business premises in Loughton.
Prosecuting, Mr Adam Pearson told the court that Lord Sugar said he “had been made to feel extremely scared and upset” over the contents and “hadn’t told his family as he knew how scared and upset it would make them”.
The letters were opened by Lord Sugar’s assistant, who then showed them to her boss.
The first letter from Gomes’ said he wanted to put “all Jews in camps and kick them out of the country” and was signed off: “The Jew hater.”
The second letter called Lord Sugar a “f**king nasty jew”.
He went on: “I would like to murder all Jews in Britain but that would be too messy as Hitler found out.”
Another passage said: “Personally we might drop by and pay you a visit, put your head in an oven”, saying this is called “baking Jewish bread.”
Mr Pearson said that one of the letters said there was “no antisemitic element within the Labor Party” then “went on to say the author of the letter was a Jew hater”.
Mr Pearson described how Lord Sugar said the letters had left feeling “extremely scared” and “always looking over my shoulder in case someone is close to me and about to physically attack me or my family”.
In a victim impact statement read to the court, the businessman said his family had been left “very nervous” when walking the streets.
On March 19 2019, Gomes was arrested at his home in Lyttelton Road, Leyton, after his DNA and fingerprints were found on one of the letters.
Officers also found additional letters written by Gomes, some to newspapers, all of which were discriminatory in nature.
They also found documents referring to “Zionist conspiracies” and similar “anti-Semitic sentiments”.
The address the original letters were sent to were listed in his address book, it was also discovered.
Gomes denied his involvement throughout the investigation.
On December 1, at Chelmsford Crown court, he was found guilty of religiously-aggravated harassment, putting those targeted in fear of violence. After failing to appear at court, a warrant was issued for his arrest of him. He was arrested the next day and remanded in custody.
Oliver Renton, defending, said Gomes has lived through difficult personal circumstances, including the death of his mother, his last living relative.
He said Gomes also wanted to apologize for not attending the trial and an email he sent to a police officer where he suggested the nature of the investigation had a political or racial aspect to it.
I have added that Mr Pearson’s assertion that the letters were “grossly offensive” were entirely accurate.
Sentencing Gomes, who was wearing a brown jacket and glasses, judge Timothy Walker said the letters were “grossly offensive, threatening, abusive in their nature,” adding: “That description does not fully explain the nature of what you wrote.”
He said that Gomes maintained he did not send the letters and does not hold racist or ant-Semitic views, but the judge said it was clear his “entrenched anti-Semitism” was the predominant motivation behind the offence.
He added that although Gomes had sent a letter apologizing for missing his trial, he had not apologized to Lord Sugar or expressed remorse.
The judge described anti-Semitism as an evil and said: “Society will not tolerate behavior such as yours.”
He told Gomes “all people are entitled to feel safe in their daily lives” adding “I note no concerns are raised about your mental health.”
Gomes was also handed a restraining order in regards to Lord Sugar.
He was sentenced to 42 months in prison and 28 days for not attending the trial, to run concurrently.
Following his conviction in December, Lord Sugar thanked the police for their work.
In a statement, he said: “I have to be honest, I was reluctant to pass this matter on to the police as they are already stretched and have enough on their plates dealing with serious crimes.
“I would like to thank them sincerely for helping to shine a light on the fact that this type of behavior is simply not acceptable and that racism or any form of discrimination is simply not acceptable.”
Investigating officer PC Marc Arnold, of Epping Forest’s Community Policing Team, added: “Nobody should ever be subjected to this level of abuse or fear of physical violence because of their faith.
“I’m really pleased that justice has been rightly served.
“There is simply no excuse for any hate crime and if this happens to you or you witness this type of behaviour, please tell us – we will not tolerate racism or discrimination of any kind and neither should you.”