Russell Brand claims he’s target of ‘war on free speech’ as police probe fresh sexual assault allegations

Russell Brand has claimed he is victim of a “war against free speech” in a new video as the Met Police confirmed it has received “a number” of fresh allegations against him.

The comedian and actor has already strongly denied accusations made by four women in an investigation by The Sunday Times, The Times and Channel 4’s Dispatches.

But on Monday Scotland Yard said it has received “a number of allegations of sexual assault in London” and elsewhere in the country following the news reports.

Police said all allegations were non-recent and there have been no arrests.

Shortly after the Met issued its brief statement on Monday, Brand made his first return to his regular Rumble show since the allegations were made against him.

The online video platform has refused to follow YouTube in blocking the comedian from earning advertising revenue on its site.

Brand said he would talk about the “collusion between big tech and Government and an apparent concerted effort by legacy media and now the state ... to silence independent media voices”.

“Obviously, it’s difficult for me to be entirely objective given the events of the last week, but that’s what we must try to do,” he said.

“The corporatist state and global media war against free speech is in full swing. How do I know? Take a guess.”

Claims were first made against Brand by four women earlier this month, who alleged sexual assaults between 2006 and 2013, while he was a presenter for BBC Radio 2 and Channel 4 and then as an actor in the US.

As the allegations came to light, Brand was blocked from earning more money from his YouTube channel.

YouTube said it had taken action “to protect” its customers because the comedian had “violated our … policy” through his “off-platform behaviour”.

The move means Brand, 48, who has been engulfed in controversy since allegations of rape and other sex crimes made by four women were revealed at the weekend, will lose a major source of income.

He has been estimated to make between £2,000 and £4,000 per video on his YouTube channel where he has more than six million followers and broadcasts daily

The BBC also removed some of its content featuring Brand from its iPlayer and Sounds websites “having assessed that it now falls below public expectations.”

On Saturday, Brand thanked his supporters for “questioning” the allegations of rape and sexual assault made against him.

In the three-minute clip, posted on YouTube, Rumble and X, he said the week since the claims were published had been “extraordinary and distressing”.

He accused “big tech and legacy media organisations” of collaborating to “target, control, choke and shut down independent media organisations”. “Like this one,” he added.

Speaking on behalf of the Met on Monday, Detective Superintendent Andy 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.”