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Public order offence

A man has been jailed for three months for dumping a pig’s head outside a mosque in Berkshire.

Rory Rowbottom, from Thatcham, left the animal’s head at the mosque on Pound Street in Newbury on 23 October.

Rowbottom pleaded guilty to one count of racially aggravated harassment and a section 4 public order offence at Reading Magistrates’ Court.

Ch Insp Lindsey Finch said his actions had left the community “distressed and horrified”.

Speaking after the hearing she said: “This was a particularly distressing crime, targeting a very respectful and close community in West Berkshire.”

Lucky Nizami, of the Newbury Mosque Committee, said: “The Muslim community is very tolerant of others’ beliefs, but hold several things very close to them; those are the Koran, the Prophet and the mosque.

“It was therefore beyond the understanding of the community why anyone would wish to insult them by directly attacking one of those, in this case the mosque.”

BBC News

edl_mergeTwo men who took part in a violent demonstration in Aylesbury town centre in May are the first members of the English Defence League (EDL) to be given a Criminal Anti-Social Behaviour Order (CRASBO).

Richard Price, aged 41, of Stonehouse Lane, Birmingham (photo top), and Collum Keyes, aged 23, from Somerton Drive, Birmingham (photo bottom), were each granted a 10-year CRASBO at Aylesbury Crown Court today (17/12), after admitting public order offences stemming from an EDL demonstration on 1 May 2010.

The CRASBO was applied for jointly by Thames Valley Police and the National Domestic Extremism Unit, a national police unit.

Price admitted a charge of causing threatening behaviour while Keyes admitted a charge of disorderly conduct. At today’s court hearing they were issued with CRASBOs, which prevents them from attending any public meeting organised by the EDL. In addition Price was given a 12-week prison sentence while Keyes was ordered to pay a £150 fine and £85 court costs.

At the sentencing hearing, Judge The Lord Parmoor said: “On the evidence before me the only reason for this march and demonstration was to provoke some reaction in the local community, in particular the local Muslim community.

“Both Mr Keyes and Mr Price paid good money to travel to Aylesbury to partake in this event. I am persuaded that their only reason for doing so was to provoke, encourage and enjoy disorder.”

PC Mike Ellis, Thames Valley Police’s Anti-Social Behaviour Coordinator, who led the CRASBO case, said: “This is a clear signal to those who use violence and disorder to further their extreme and racist views to intimidate and create fear within minority communities.

“Their behaviour will not be tolerated within the Thames Valley Police area, and we will use whatever measures are available to us to tackle such people.”

Det Con Andy Haworth, of the National Domestic Extremism Unit, said: “We’re really pleased with today’s result which prevents two violent criminals from using Defence League demonstrations as a forum to commit violence and cause distress to others.

“While the Defence Leagues are legitimate protest organisations, violence has been a persistent feature of their demonstrations, and we hope the success of today’s application will prevent that violence.

“We will work to support all police forces with CRASBO applications against any who persistently commits criminal acts at Defence League demonstrations, regardless of whether they profess to support the Defence League or oppose it, in order to ensure future demonstrations are peaceful and lawful.”

The CRASBOs oblige Price and Keyes:
Not knowingly to organise, travel to, participate in, or control any march, demonstration, protest or similar event in the open air which takes place more than 10 miles from the centre of Birmingham.

Not knowingly to send or attempt to send any article, letter, fax or email that refers to, or seeks to promote or publicise, any march, demonstration, protest or similar event in the open air which takes place more than 10 miles from the centre of Birmingham.

Thames Valley Police

Henry Hunter

Henry Hunter

A teenager found guilty of violent disorder following an attack on Kingston Mosque has been spared jail.

Henry Hunter, 19, was convicted last month after a gang of young men laid siege to a mosque in East Road, having previously attended a protest march against Muslim extremism, in November 2010.

But he was acquitted of racially aggravated criminal damage.

At Kingston Crown Court this morning, Hunter, from Ashford in Middlesex, was sentenced to six months at a young offenders’ institute, suspended for 12 months.

He was fined £1,000, given 250 hours of unpaid work, and handed a four month curfew order banning him from leaving his home on Saturday, Sunday and Monday nights.

Hunter was also given an exclusion order banning him from Kingston town centre for a year.

Before the sentence was passed, Hunter’s solicitor Michael Green told Recorder Roderick Fletcher that Hunter was a young man of previous good character who had not been in trouble before or after the mosque attack.

Mr Green said Hunter’s attitude had changed considerably in the two years since the attack, and he was now also holding down a job as a fork lift truck driver.

He contrasted Hunter’s police record with those of Martin Pottle and Alfie Wallace, who, along with David Morris, were all jailed for the attack in April.

Mr Green said Pottle had four previous public order offences and had been sentenced to six months in prison for affray in 2010.

Wallace had convictions for violence, robbery, criminal damage, assaulting a police officer and racially aggravated offences.

Mr Green also pointed to the fact Hunter handed himself into the police voluntarily, after his picture appeared on the front page of the Surrey Comet in the wake of the convictions of Pottle, Wallace and Morris.

Mr Green said: “This is a young man who handed himself into a police station after his picture was published in the Surrey Comet on the same day.

“His attitudes have changed considerably, his personal circumstances have changed considerably.

“He hopes to be given the opportunity to carry on working. Things have changed in terms of his employment, and in terms of his attitude.

“There are no new offences. The author of the pre-sentence report has spoken to the police and there is no suggestion he has been involved in any previous activity.”

Sentencing Hunter, Recorder Fletcher said: “You surrendered voluntarily to the police, you are currently in employment and you have a stable home environment.

“You’ve made important changes to your lifestyle and attitude in the past two years.”

“I’ve felt able to take a different course in your case to the course taken regarding Mr Pottle and Mr Wallace.

“Mr Pottle was substantially older than you, and Mr Wallace was marginally older than you.

“Both were convicted of two offences – violent disorder and religiously aggravated damage to property and both had relevant previous convictions.

“In these circumstances I’ve taken what could be considered as an unusual course in relation to your sentence.”

Surrey Comet

English Defence League clash with anti-fascist groups in Manchester.
English Defence League clash with anti-fascist groups in Manchester.

AN English Defence League supporter has been fined for his role in the organisation’s October protest in Manchester city centre.

Lee Howarth, 24, from Milnrow in Rochdale, was arrested at Piccadilly Station on October 10, after shouting abuse and swearing at police officers. Hundreds of EDL supporters gathered on the day to demonstrate.

Manchester magistrates’ court heard yesterday how Howarth, who is unemployed, persisted in swearing at police despite repeatedly being told to ‘calm down’.

With his fists raised, Howarth responded: ‘Think you’re a big man? Make me.’

Howarth was drunk at the time.

Philip Lythgoe, defending, said Howarth accepts he swore but that it was in response to being ‘pushed around by police’.

Chairman of the bench, Iain Simms, said: ‘Police are there to do a job and you don’t expect them to be shouted and sworn at.’

Howarth pleaded guilty to a public order offence of using threatening, abusive or insulting words or behaviour and was fined a total of £100.

The EDL claims only to oppose radical Islam but supporters were seen at the October demonstrations making Nazi salutes.

Around 1,500 people joined a counter protest by Unite Against Fascism and the two sides faced-off for five hours, separated by police in riot gear and on horseback.

A total of 48 people were arrested during the day and the demonstration left the city with an £800,000 bill.

Manchester Evening News

A man has been sentenced to 12 weeks imprisonment for his part in the disturbance which occurred during the English Defence League and Unite Against Fascism protests in the city centre.

Ryan Herbert (06/04/87) of Bland Road, New Parks, pleaded guilty at Leicester Magistrates Court last month to criminal damage to property and to a Section 4 public order offence. He was sentenced last week.

The incident happened on October 9, 2010, in Humberstone Gate East when damage was caused to windows at Fabrika Bar at the Arts Centre.

In Leicester

James Everley, James Smith and Joshua Morris were sentenced to three years for the arson attack

James Everley, James Smith and Joshua Morris were sentenced to three years for the arson attack

Three men have been sentenced for an arson attack on a newly-renovated mosque in West Sussex.

James Everley, 20, of Crawley, James Smith, 20, of Burgess Hill, and Joshua Morris, 20, of Haywards Heath, were all sentenced to three years at a young offenders institute.

The fire at the mosque in Wivelsfield Road, Haywards Heath, was started at about 02:10 GMT on 13 February.

Police believe the attack was a religiously-aggravated hate crime.

The men had pleaded guilty at Hove Crown Court to arson, theft of paraffin and a public order offence, which involved racially or religiously aggravated fear of violence.

Ch Insp Jon Hull, district commander for Mid Sussex, said: “The mosque was occupied at the time this fire was started and it could have had devastating consequences if it hadn’t been put out quickly.

“Thankfully only damage was caused to the building.

“Everyone who lives, works or visits Sussex has a right to go about their lives without becoming the victim of a hate crime because of their disability, race, religious beliefs, sexual orientation or gender identity.”

The mosque had been renovated and had reopened three months before the attack

BBC News

kevin-carroll-court-case-11-1279816669-article-0

A judge and two magistrates decided Kevin Carroll’s behaviour had been likely that day to cause alarm and distress in Luton Town Centre.

But minutes after losing his appeal Mr Carroll a 41 year old carpenter emerged from Luton crown court where his case had been heard to a hero’s welcome.

Scores of young men chanted “EDL, EDL” a reference to the right wing group, The English Defence League.

Mr Carroll addressed the crowd saying “Thank you patriots and people of our great democracy for supporting me.”

He said the country was “falling” more and more under the influence of Sharia law and he and people like him were being “treated like enemies of the state.”

To rousing applause he ended by “God Bless our Troops, God save the Queen.”

Later he said “I am disappointed by the court’s decision but I will accept it on the chin and move on”

He said on the day of the protest by Muslim extremists which had led to his arrest he had been intent on protecting a group of veterans and old soldiers.

He added what upset him most that day was that the extremists had been allowed to protest in front of the soldiers and next to their families who had attended the parade

Caroll, a married man had gone to court earlier in the day to appeal against his conviction earlier this year when he was found guilty of using threatening words and behaviour likely to to cause fear harassment and alarm.

In court Judge Christopher Compston hearing the case was told how on March 10 last year there was a home coming parade by the 2nd Battalion The Royal Anglian Regiment through Luton Town Centre.

But within minutes of the march getting underway a group of Islamic extremists staged an anti war protest

They had placards and shouted at the troops “Butchers of Basra” and “British soldiers go to hell.

The group were standing near the town hall and an angry crowd, incensed that the soldiers were being subjected to the protest, began a counter demonstration.

They had to be separated from the young Muslims by a cordon of police officers.

In a stand off the crowd were heard to shout “No surrender to the Talban,” “England, England” and “Scum, Scum Scum.

Carroll of Bolingbroke Road, Luton was captured on town centre CCTV as being part of the crowd angry at the Muslim protest.

He was arrested later by police officers and earlier this year found guilty of the public order offence and given a nine month conditional discharge and told he must pay costs of £175.

In court Mr Carroll said he had been “extremely angry and upset” when he saw the extremists protesting against the soldiers”

He said there was an “instantaneous upset” among many people who had gone to the parade and he had ended as part of a crowd that had vented their anger towards the protesters.

“I just couldn’t believe they had been allowed to do that.

He said at one point he ran towards a group of veterans because he thought the Muslim protester was heading in their protection and he wanted to protect the old soldiers.

“I swore at the extremists, I don’t deny that, but it was a crazy situation. It was not something I condone but there was so much anger and emotion from everyone.”

He added “Everyone was doing the same thing. People were so upset by what these people had done and wanted to give them a piece of their mind”

He added “Everyone in the vicinity was swearing and shouting and roaring”

Mr Carroll denied that he’d been a ring leader that day

Dismissing the appeal Judge Christopher Compston told Carroll “We have no doubt at all that you did use threatening, abusive and insulting words and behaviour which was likely to cause harassment, alarm and distress.”

The judge said the CCTV evidence had been overwhelming and he went on “We dismiss your appeal.

He ordered that Carroll pay further costs of £330.

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