A group of men were photographed performing the Hitler salute as they celebrated the Nazi dictator’s birthday at a family pub.
Thomas Sewell, the leader of the National Socialist Network, was one of those at the event held at the Bavarian – a German-themed outlet – in Knox City Shopping Centre at Wantirna, in Melbourne, on Thursday.
Photos shared in encrypted messaging services showed the men raising their hands in a Nazi salute as one held a picture of Hitler and another held two balloons shaped in the letter H, meaning Heil Hitler.
A group of men were photographed performing the Hitler salute as they celebrated the Nazi dictator’s birthday at a pub in Melbourne
Thomas Sewell, the leader of the National Socialist Network, was one of those at the event held at the Bavarian – a German-themed outlet – in Knox City Shopping Centre at Wantirna, in Melbourne, on Thursday
Chair of the Anti-Defamation Commission Dr Dvir Abramovich described it as a ‘sad and dark day for our democracy.’
‘Something is very wrong in Victoria, and we should be all alarmed by this brazen and stomach-churning outrage that will forever be a stain on our state,’ he told Daily Mail Australia.
Sewell, who last year was found guilty of assaulting a Channel 9 security guard, reportedly described the night as ‘great and eventful’ in a Telegram message.
‘Despite not breaking any laws and not disturbing a soul, we were set upon by a dozen scum from Victoria Police who were terribly upset we were celebrating this holy day instead of the government approved gay or paedophile holidays,’ the message read.
‘Being confronted by systemic violence while our families and babies were present we were forced to eat our Hitler cake while being escorted from the shopping centre under threat of political violence.
‘They persecute us because they know we are rising and the world will learn the truth about Hitler and look to us for leadership,’ Sewell wrote.
Victoria Police confirmed that officers ‘attended a licensed premise in Wantirna South on Thursday.
‘It is understood a group of people performed a Nazi salute at a venue on Burwood Highway and were asked to leave about 8.45pm.
‘Police moved the group on, and no offences were identified,’ a police spokesperson said.
Another member of the group Jimeone Roberts also reportedly sent a Telegram message of a man performing the Nazi salute in front of a group of Victoria Police officers.
Thomas Sewell (pictured left) visited Nine Network’s building in Melbourne on March 1, 2021, with a cameraman and demanded to speak to someone from A Current Affair
‘Victoria … Police decided to gatecrash and harass a celebration of Adolf Hitler’s Birthday … utilising Public Order Response and dozens of treasonous anti-White pigs,’ the message read.
‘Despite total compliance, the … scum continued to attempt to instigate violence against wholesome family men simply enjoying a night out,’ it continued.
Though doing a Heil Hitler salute is not illegal in Victoria, it will be as soon as legislation to ban it passes through the state parliament.
This process is underway after neo-Nazis hijacked a ‘Let Women Speak’ rally in front of Victoria’s parliament last month.
Neo-Nazi Ethan Hendren was seen at that rally and he also captured in photos taken at the event on Thursday.
Dr Abramovich, who is Australia’s leading anti-hate advocate, said the actions of Sewell and his cohort amounted to a ‘singular evil’.
‘This beyond despicable display of Hitler worshipping and depravity belongs in Nazi Germany of the 1930s, not in a local restaurant where parents and children gather.’
He said the Nazi salutes are a ‘terrifying horror’ for Holocaust survivors, particularly given when it happened.
‘In the very week that the Jewish community across the country commemorated and mourned the systematic extermination of six million Jews at the hands of the Third Reich and its collaborators, these hardcore white supremacists celebrated the birthday of the very monster responsible for the gassing of mothers and babies and the shooting of families in open fields,’ he said.
Dr Abramovich urged Victorian Premier Daniel Andrews to crack down on neo-Nazis.
‘This is a timely wake-up call that we as a society need to keep a close watch on the resurgence of this dangerous movement if we want to prevent any further shooting rampages as we witnessed in New Zealand and other parts of the world.
‘This is a fight we have to win,’ he said.
Outside court, Sewell (pictured) was defiant, again giving a Nazi salute as he emerged
Dr Abramovich (pictured) urged Victorian Premier Daniel Andrews to crack down on neo-Nazis