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    Gavin McInnes is surrounded by supporters after speaking at a rally Thursday, April 27, 2017, in Berkeley, California.

    Australia Denies Entry to Founder of Proud Boys Extremist Group Gavin McInnes

    © AP Photo/ Marcio Jose Sanchez
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    Gavin McInnes, co-founder of Vice Media and founder of the Proud Boys gang, is effectively banned from entering Australia after failing the country’s “character test.” McInnes stepped down recently from the Proud Boys after it was revealed that the FBI considers it an extremist group.

    McInnes was trying to hold a tour across Australia with far-right British activist Tommy Robinson, but more than 80,000 people asked Australia's Home Affairs Department to block his entry into the country via a petition.

    The Home Affairs Department told McInnes that it was probably going to deny his visa request. Then, the former gang leader failed to reach his deadline for appeal on Friday.

    "To have allowed him to come still I think would have made it seem as if the government had given tacit approval at the very least to these calls for violence against people you don't agree with as a legitimate form of free speech," Nyadol Nyuon, an attorney who spearheaded the petition, told the Australian Broadcasting Corporation.

    "I'm happy that women, non-whites, certain members of the LGBTI communities don't have to live in an atmosphere of fear after these individuals are allowed to come in, or from the fear of what that might suggest to them," she said.

    McInnes has previously called on Proud Boys to "choke a tr*nny. Get your fingers around the windpipe." McInnes has also called for violence "generally" and said "we need more violence from the Trump people."

    Earlier in November, a report from the Clark County Sheriff's Office in Vancouver was posted by the nonprofit Property of the People, revealing the FBI's designation of the Proud Boys as an "extremist group with ties to White Nationalism."

    If you ask the members of the group, however, they say they are merely "Western chauvinists."

    Proud Boys have "contributed to the recent escalation of violence at political rallies held on college campuses, and in cities like Charlottesville, Virginia; Portland, Oregon; and Seattle, Washington," the report says.

    McInnes himself has described the Proud Boys as a "gang" with ranks, earned by participating in street brawls and similar acts.

    On Thursday, New York City Police Department officials announced that a seventh member of the group had been arrested in connection to violence in the city in October that saw left-wing protesters beaten.

    The group, McInnes included, was banned from Twitter in August for violating the platform's policies against extremist groups. Facebook followed suit in October.

    McInnes held on tight, however, at least until after it was revealed that the FBI considers the Proud Boys an extremist group, at which point he distanced himself from the organization in a video announcement.


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