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racially aggravated assault

A father-of-three has been spared jail after assaulting a man and his teenage son with a paving slab as they walked to their mosque.

Shaun Wilkinson, 25, pleaded guilty to racially aggravated assault after unleashing a barrage of vile racist abuse at the men as they walked down Thompson Street, Preston.

Preston Crown Court heard Wilkinson, of Slaidburn Road, Ribbleton, saw the father and his 14-year-old son approaching and said “watch this” to his girlfriend. As they walked past, Wilkinson punched the father in his face.

The son stepped in to try and help his father, grappling Wilkinson to the ground. However, Wilkinson got up and threw a piece of paving stone, hitting the youngster in the forehead.

Rachel Faux, prosecuting, told the court: “(The father) asked what the problem was and received a barrage of verbal abuse.

“As the father waited for the police to be called there was further abuse from females on the street.”

The police arrived and arrested Wilkinson he continued making racist comments.

During the attack the father’s diabetes flared up and he was taken to hospital with his son.

In a victim impact statement, he said: “The incident has affected me and my son and all our family very badly.

“Before this incident I always used to walk to mosque by walking the same way but now I go to mosque by car.”

Daniel Prowse, defending Wilkinson, said: “This was an extremely ugly incident of gratuitous violence and racist language – something Shaun Wilkinson finds it difficult to comprehend he would even do.”

Shaun Wilkinson - EDL

Shaun Wilkinson – EDL. Courtesy of Islamophobiawatch.co.uk

He said Wilkinson worked with a number of Asian people and felt a sense of “deep shame” about his behaviour.

Wilkinson has a criminal record but Mr Prowse said he has tried very hard to put the past behind him and had stayed out of trouble for four years before the attack.

Wilkinson was handed a 14 month sentence suspended for 18 months with a curfew between 9pm and 8am for six months.

He must also carry out 250 hours of unpaid work and pay his victims £500 compensation each.

Lancashire Evening Post

A Luton man, who carried out a racially aggravated assault when a mob went on the rampage in Luton in May last year, has been sentenced to 16 months imprisonment today, March 26, at Luton Crown Court.

Kier McElroy, 19, of Langford Drive, attacked a young Asian man in a shop doorway in Chapel Street, hitting him across the head with a placard he was holding.

On March 5, a jury at Luton Crown Court, found McElroy guilty of racially aggravated assault occasioning actual bodily harm on a Luton student.

He had earlier admitted assaulting the student occasioning him actual bodily harm and a second charge of affray, which resulted from his actions that day.

Luton Today

A taxi driver has hit out at a thug who used a legal loophole to avoid jail after subjecting him to a violent assault.

Shaun Burns, 19, of Mayfield Avenue, Ingol, was found guilty of racially aggravated assault and criminal damage to the taxi during the period of a previous three months sentence, suspended for a year, imposed in May 2011 for affray.

But a shameful legal loophole has seen him walk out of court a free man,.

His suspended jail term had originally been imposed by Crown court, meaning magistrates, who found him guilty of the attack in March, had to commit his sentencing to the crown court.

Burns then appealed the verdict, leading to a further delay in sentence. He then abandoned the appeal.

By the day of Burn’s sentencing on Thursday – four months after his case was committed – the period of his suspended sentence had expired and Judge Ian Leeming QC, sitting at Preston’s Sessions House, ruled it would be ‘unjust’ to activate the order.

Instead Burns walked out of court with another suspended term, this time for 16 weeks suspended for a year, with 100 hours unpaid work, £350 costs and £520 compensation.

Earlier this year father–of-five Muhammed Hussain, from Holme Slack, Preston, told how he feared for his life after Burns, his partner Bryanne-Serrita Langham, 22, and friend Callum Tennant, 20, launched a racist attack on him before threatening to “take him down a side street and kill him”.

During the terrifying incident last December his attackers even threatened to cut off the Miller’s taxi driver’s beard.

Today a Crown Prosecution Service spokesman said: “Shaun Burns was found guilty after trial on March 22, 2012 at Preston Magistrates Court of racially aggravated common assault and criminal damage.

“The magistrates decided they had insufficient sentencing powers for these particular offences and committed the case to Preston Crown Court for sentence. The CPS was advised that Mr Burns was to exercise his right to appeal this conviction and therefore the Crown Court took the case out of the listing pending the outcome of the appeal.

“The appeal was subsequently abandoned by the defence and the case was relisted for sentence at Preston Crown Court on July 19.”

Tennant, of Marshall Grove, Ingol, was found guilty of racially aggravated assault and criminal damage to the taxi, which was kicked and dented when Mr Hussain pulled over to let them out at Lane Ends pub in Ashton.

He was given a community order, five month curfew and 200 hours unpaid work and ordered to pay £130 compensation and £50 costs in March.

Langham, 22, of Sylvancroft, Ingol, pleaded guilty to criminal damage to a taxi and making off without paying the £4.50 fare and was ordered to pay £84.50 compensation, a £100 fine, a £15 victim surcharge and £40 costs.

Mr Hussain, 36, had picked up the group from Marshall Grove on December 28, last year.

Lancashire Evening Post

A man who ripped off a Muslim woman’s veil in a shopping centre because he thought she was “just another illegal immigrant” has been spared jail.

Ian Brazier, from Shirley, Solihull, was given a six-week sentence, suspended for 18 months, and ordered to complete a diversity awareness course by magistrates in the town.

The 26-year-old had admitted racially aggravated assault at an early hearing.

The court heard that he tore Farhana Chughtai’s niqab from her face and threw it on the floor in Solihull’s Touchwood complex on March 3 as she shopped with family.

Alan Bryce, defending, said his client was angry at the time of the incident because he had been smoking cannabis and the films he was planning to watch at the centre’s cinema were not showing.

He said: “He was angry that he couldn’t see the films or the films he wanted to see weren’t there.

“All these pent-up emotions were unfortunately released when he saw this lady.”

The solicitor said Mrs Chughtai was a “random victim”, spotted by unemployed Mr Brazier as he came down an escalator in the complex.

He said: “He had been taking cannabis and it had made him angry.

“He saw her and he thought ‘There’s just another illegal immigrant’.”

The court heard that Mrs Chughtai, from Balsall Heath, Birmingham, told police she felt “naked and violated” by the assault.

In a statement released by West Midlands Police after the sentencing, the 26-year-old victim said: “At the time of the attack I felt violated and very distressed.

“Today, I remain self-conscious and worry that the same thing may happen to me again.

“I am aware of other similar incidents in the West Midlands which have not been reported to police.

“This should not be the case; victims should report these crimes as soon as they happen.

“I am pleased with West Midlands Police’s efforts to trace my attacker and the way they have handled this investigation and I would like to extend my thanks to the officers involved.”

Chief Inspector Kevin Doyle said: “Despite the shocking nature of this offence, reports of crimes like this are exceptionally rare both in Solihull and the wider West Midlands.

“When they are reported to us, I would like to assure victims that they are investigated thoroughly, professionally and victims treated with the utmost dignity and respect.

“Today’s sentence shows that there is no place for hate in Solihull.”

Brazier was given an 18-month supervision order and told he must complete a 21-day activity requirement which examines diversity and prejudice.

Chairman of the bench Mark Kershaw also ordered him to complete 250 hours of unpaid work in the community and pay £100 compensation to the victim.

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