Meet Ashley Sims

Comrades in the south west might like to keep an eye out for Ashley Sims. This career con-man set himself up as arbiter of who is worthy of mutual aid in Torbay, his criterion being whether they actually sleep outside*. Street people suspected by Sims of spending a night indoors are surreptitiously photographed, accused of being “professional beggars” or “fake homeless”, their pictures fly-posted by Sims and bandied about online, inviting their abuse by thugs.

* Hostels and night shelters aren’t free, and if you miss a night you have to re-apply, so if you depend on them in practice you either have to beg every day, or steal.

Interviewed by Radio 4, Sims declared he would continue his campaign until someone had died as a result, after it was revealed one of his victims had been battered with a hammer. After an ill-advised TV appearance, and getting outed as a racist by a tabloid newspaper (even his natural constituency has abandoned him) Sims has gone to ground, possibly in Paignton.

This parasite refers to himself as a “businessman” and used to be a publican but has trouble getting his licences renewed for some reason. It is to be hoped Sims will become a victim of his own malice.