Russell Brand hits out at 'war against free speech' in live show return

Russell Brand has made his return to his live online show following a week of sexual assault allegations.

The comedian, 48, went live on the right-wing platform Rumble after YouTube demonetised his content amid his scandal.

Brand has been accused of rape, sexual assault, and controlling behaviour by several women at the height of his fame, with investigations now launched by the BBC, Channel 4, and now the Metropolitan Police force.

As more women have come forward over recent days, Brand has denied the accusations against him, stating that while he was one ‘promiscuous’, any sexual encounters were ‘always consensual’.

Speaking to over 70,000 viewers on Rumble on Monday night (September 25), Brand hit out at the ‘war against free speech’, sticking to his word after promising a comeback last Friday.

‘The global media war against free speech is in full swing, how do I know? Take a guess…’, he began, making reference to his own headlines.

‘Today, of course, we’re talking about events of the last week but, in particular, the collusion between big tech and government and an apparent concerted effort by legacy media and now the state and big tech to silent independent media voices.

‘Obviously, it’s difficult for me to be entirely objective given the events of the past week but that’s what we’ll try to do.’

Also in his rambling, the controversial podcaster accused the the British government of demanding that big technology platforms censor his online content.

He went on to blast his former employer, the BBC, for its ‘trust news initiative’ that tackles fake news. 

Brand proceeded to ask his viewers to donate, with subscribers paying a minimum of $60 (£48) a year to subscribe to Rumble, with creators profiting from donations.

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His live-stream began just moments after the Met announced the launch of an investigation into allegations of past sexual offences in London and other areas.

These offences are all non-recent.

Officers will be offering specialist support to all of the women who have made allegations.

The investigation is being carried out by detectives in the Met’s Central Specialist Crime Command, led by Detective Superintendent Andy Furphy.

Supt Furphy said: ‘We continue to encourage anyone who believes they may have been a victim of a sexual offence, no matter how long ago it was, to contact us.

‘We understand it can feel like a difficult step to take and I want to reassure that we have a team of specialist officers available to advise and support.’

There have been no arrests and enquiries continue.

His most recent address before the live show saw Brand thank his community for their ‘support’

Taking to social media over the weekend to break his silence after lying low, the St Trinians actor said the week since the claims were published had been ‘extraordinary’ and ‘distressing’.

Brand added that he never imagined that he would need his followers’ support as much as he does now.

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