First minister calls for end to vexatious reports after far-right agitators attempt to ‘overwhelm’ official systems

Neo-Nazi and far-right agitators are exploiting Scotland’s new hate crime law to make vexatious complaints en masse in an attempt to “overwhelm” police systems.

A prominent figure in England’s white nationalist movement is among those urging followers to spam Police Scotland with anonymous online reports, the *Observer *has found.

The leader of a far-right group – one of several fringe organisations being assessed by the UK government under its new extremism definition – promoted a private channel on the encrypted messaging app Telegram that includes a “call to action” urging members to “mass report”.

Posts in the channel instruct members to log cases of supposed “anti-white” hate, which they say includes a statement on the police force’s website that “young men aged 18-30 are most likely to commit hate crime”.