Xahra Saleem has pleaded guilty to stealing over $36,000 from donors
Black Lives Matter (BLM) Bristol organizer Xahra Saleem © Getty Images / Ben Birchall; PA Images
A Black Lives Matter organizer in the UK city of Bristol has admitted to stealing money from a fundraising page set up ahead of a demonstration in 2020 during which a prominent statue was toppled, The Times reported on Tuesday.
According to the report, 23-year-old Xahra Saleem pleaded guilty to one count of fraud last week after an alleged £30,000 ($36,400) went missing from a crowdfunding page she had organized.
A self-described screenwriter, Saleem, who also goes by Yvonne Maina, was one of the five organizers of the Bristol BLM protest on June 7, 2020 in response to the killing of George Floyd by a police officer in the US. She was also the co-founder of the All Black Lives Bristol group and had at one point even been named one of the most influential people under the age of 30 in Bristol by a local youth publication.
Several days before the 2020 BLM protest during which a statue of Edward Colsten was knocked over, Saleem opened up a donation page on GoFundMe called BristBLM where she asked for help covering the costs of the demonstration and paying for protective equipment for the protesters.