Remain obsessive battling to sink BoJo: GUY ADAMS on the man who took £24,000 out of fighting fund to pay himself

Marcus Ball hates lies. He especially hates politicians who lie, a fact trumpeted on his own page on a professional networking website which states: ‘When politicians lie, democracy dies.‘

This is why the 29-year-old is prosecuting .

Mr Ball, pictured at court yesterday, has repeatedly insisted the case has nothing to do with a wish to frustrate . 

It is simply to ‘stop lying in politics‘. All very noble. Yet one man‘s ‘lie‘ is usually another‘s ‘fair comment‘, especially in these vexed political times. So how does Mr Ball live up to his own high-minded ideals?

To find out, let us look at his personal page on the website Crowdfunder, where he launched his legal fight in July 2016.

It was mysteriously deleted at 5.18pm on the 29th of that month. A copy can still be seen on internet archives and it shows the floppy-haired Mr Ball‘s pitch in pursuit of ‘£100,000 minimum‘ from donors.

‘Once these prosecutions have established that politicians did indeed lie to voters, our next step will be to take other action to prevent Brexit,‘ it reads. ‘This may be in the form of a judicial review.‘

Mr Ball‘s statement added that the campaign was being organised with ‘other Remain campaigners‘ and had been born in a Facebook page called The 48 Percent – presumably referring to the minority who voted Remain. 

All of which suggests his intention, at the time, was very much to stop Brexit. Despite the large number of times he subsequently insisted that wasn‘t the case.

So were his own aforementioned public statements lies? Did he simply misspeak? Or have his views evolved over time?

Then there‘s the issue of Mr Ball‘s finances.

The fundraising website explained: ‘This is a non-profit campaign. The people involved are volunteering their time freely.‘

In October 2016, Mr Ball repeated this line, saying he had ‘worked unpaid on the campaign for the past three months.‘

That position has evolved, too.

At some point, Mr Ball decided not to volunteer his time freely. He recently told an interviewer that he was paying himself a salary of ‘around £24,000‘ from his crowd-funding kitty.

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This money will have supplemented his other earnings, which according to Mr Ball‘s personal website, come from his varied career as a ‘prosecutor‘, ‘reformer‘, ‘speaker‘ and ‘writer‘. 

That site, which is adorned with pictures and videos of Mr Ball, represents an intriguing exercise in personal branding.

On the page devoted to his public speaking career, for example, it says that since 2010 he has earned money from ‘speaking in public and teaching public speaking skills‘.

The page is illustrated with the logos of a number of major institutions which have invited him to speak, including the University of Cambridge.

However, Mr Ball, who was educated at Canterbury Christ Church University in Kent, is believed to have given only one talk in Cambridge – in the last academic year, to Peterhouse College. 

That appears to be the limit of his dealings with Cambridge. Intriguingly, Mr Ball‘s website also says he‘s contributed to Russia Today, the controversial Kremlin-funded TV station recently fined by Ofcom for breaching broadcasting standards during coverage of the Salisbury poisonings.

The website carries the logo (a two-headed eagle resembling a coat of arms) of an organisation called Ambition House. In fact, it‘s a company Mr Ball founded in 2012 to ‘provide unique training and education to students and graduates‘ but which has since been dissolved.

Mr Ball is a director of three other companies: Think of a Name Later Ltd, a software development firm founded in 2016 but which has been dormant since then; a PR firm incorporated in 2017, which was due to file accounts last month, but hasn‘t. 

And finally Brexit Justice Ltd, which seems to have been created to run his legal campaign against Boris Johnson, and whose latest accounts show assets of just £22,000.

Several are registered to his family home, a £630,000 property near Norwich Cathedral. Mr Ball was born in the Norfolk city in 1989, the son of a retired English teacher.

His birth certificate lists his name as Joshua Edwin Ball. At some point during adulthood, it is believed he changed it by deed poll, to Marcus, for £15. It‘s unclear why.

But as Boris Johnson will doubtless reflect, this is a man with a habit of seeking to re-write history.

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