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A politician’s eight-year-old daughter was “petrified” when anti-Islamic protesters marched into the garden of their home with banners and banged on the window.

Lancashire MEP Sajjad Karim’s home was targeted by the English Defence League (EDL) as part of a day of protests against “radical Islam” in the county on July 2 last year.

Twelve admitted public order offences at Preston Crown Court for offences committed during the protests at another location in Brierfield and will be sentenced on May 25.

Speaking from Brussels, Mr Karim, who was due to give evidence, said: “It is not the sort of thing any child should ever have to be prepared for.”

Bernard Holmes, 26, of Bolton Road; Leonard Hawley, 47, of Worcester Road; David Wilson, 47, of Devon Road, all Blackburn, and Jason Smith, 43, of Torquay Avenue, Burnley pleaded guilty to racially aggravated provocation of violence while David Garrett, 45, of Beckett Street, Darwen, admitted having an offensive weapon.

Leanne Thornton, 26, of Oak Avenue, Todmorden; Graham Smith, 48, of Draperfield, Chorley; Paul Blundell, 45, of Lee Street, Longridge, John English, 24, of Shorrock Lane, Blackburn; Martin Corner, 31, of Corporation Street, Chorley; Jordan Lonsdale, 20, of Ribble Lane, Clitheroe, and Paul Jackson, 41, of Spring Bank Terrace, Blackburn, pleaded not guilty to violent disorder but admitted using threatening behaviour.

Sajjad Karim added: “To be afraid to leave ones house as a mob fuelled by hate protests outside is as frightening as it gets. They showed no regard to the fact my wife and daughter were at home.

“It left me hoping and praying that our four walls would keep us safe and you can’t begin to imagine how my young daughter felt.

“There were many more innocent people caught up in their violence that day and I am thankful this eleventh hour change of plea means they won’t have to relive their ordeal in a courtroom.

“We have not and will not allow such mobs to use their threatening ways to hound people in our society.”

Lancashire Evening Post

A convicted football hooligan has admitted his involvement in an attack where a bacon sandwich was thrown at a Bristol mosque.

Kevin Crehan, 34, of Stockwood Crescent, Knowle, was charged with a racially aggravated public order offence following the incident at Jamia Mosque in Green Street, Totterdown, last month.

In a five minute hearing at Bristol Crown Court he pleaded guilty to the charge, accepting a religiously aggravated offence to cause Nasir Ahmed harassment, alarm or distress.

Judge Martin Picton adjourned his case, pending a probation report, until March 24.

He bailed Crehan on condition he co-operates with the probation service.

Crehan’s bail also prevents him from going on the pavement outside, or within the boundaries of, any mosque in England and Wales.

The judge told him: “You have to understand this case carries custody.”.

On Sunday, January 17, a flag was said to be hung on a fence outside the mosque stating: “No mosque wanted here” and “Bristol United Patriots”.

Elderly worshippers attending the mosque were abused and bacon was thrown.

Self-styled anti-Muslim group, Bristol United Patriots, operate across the city but have publicly denied having anything to do with the attack.

It is not Crehan’s first brush with the law, which has included assaulting a police officer.

In 2010 he was sentenced to seven months in prison for breaching a three year football banning order.

At the time Bristol Crown Court heard the then 28-year-old was caught with a sawn-off pool cue down his trousers.

Crehan admitted four breaches which included failing to report to a police station during the World Cup and being inside an exclusion zone before a Bristol City versus Milwall match.

The court heard he had been banned from being within a mile of Bristol City’s Ashton Gate ground.

Crehan pleaded guilty to having an offensive weapon and stealing a DVD.

Regarding the mosque attack Alison Bennett, 46, Mark Bennett, 48, both of Spruce Way, Patchway and Angelina Swailes, 31, of West Town Avenue, Brislington have all been charged with a racially aggravated public order offence.

The Bennetts and Swailes have been released on bail with a condition not to enter or go within 100 metres of any mosque.

They are due to appear at Bristol Magistrates’ Court on February 25.

Bristol Post

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Craig McLaughlin, 21, of Grange Road, Layton, pleaded guilty to an offence of threatening with an offensive weapon. His arrest followed an incident in the Hatfield Avenue area of Fleetwood on September 21 last year.

Craig McLaughlin, 21, of Grange Road, Layton, pleaded guilty to an offence of threatening with an offensive weapon. His arrest followed an incident in the Hatfield Avenue area of Fleetwood on September 21 last year.

Swinging a baseball bat at a stranger in the street has left a Blackpool man facing a six-month spell behind bars.

Craig McLaughlin swung the weapon towards a man riding past him on a bicycle, causing the cyclist to almost fall off his bike.

A court heard the defendant had consumed alcohol as well as cocaine beforehand and had no real recollection of what happened.

McLaughlin, 21, of Grange Road, Layton, pleaded guilty to an offence of threatening with an offensive weapon.

His arrest followed an 
incident in the Hatfield 
Avenue area of Fleetwood on September 21.

Mercedeh Jabbari, prosecuting at Preston Crown Court, said a man was riding towards a junction that afternoon when he noticed a man coming out of a gateway which led to the rear of some flats.

He told the court: “As he rode past the defendant, Craig McLaughlin, was rushing 
towards him saying ‘you think you’re hard, don’t you?’

“He began swinging the bat towards him.

“The male almost fell off his bicycle, but managed to swerve. He hit the kerb.”

The man contacted the police while keeping McLaughlin, who continued to shout, in sight.

While the man was on the phone to the police, the defendant had taken his top off and was running around.

He subsequently dropped the bat.

The prosecution said McLaughlin then showed passive resistance towards a police officer.

He would not providing any details of who he was.

McLaughlin had 35 previous offences on his record.

In October he was given 12 weeks prison for breaching a suspended sentence made in April of last year.

Julie Taylor, defending, said McLaughlin had drunk far too much at the time and had also taken cocaine.

She said: “He had had an argument.

“He had the baseball bat for his protection.

“He picked it up and after that he really hasn’t any recollection of making a threat towards the man.

“He accepts his guilt.

“He simply has no recollection, but accepts the man would have been extremely fearful during the incident.

“It is something for which the defendant has expressed remorse and wishes to 
apologise to him and to the court.”

Ms Taylor added that the prison term passed after the offence last September had been a real wake up call for him.

McLaughlin had given up drinking to excess and now only occasionally smoked cannabis.

BBC News

Craig McLaughlin FB

FOOTBALL hooligan Jeff Marsh has been banned from football grounds for five years after admitting affray.

The 44-year-old Cardiff City supporter was found in possession of a knuckleduster when he was arrested for affray outside the Ninian Park pub in Canton, Cardiff, last June.

The self-proclaimed hooligan, who has written two books about his exploits with the city’s infamous Soul Crew and is one of the organisers of the Welsh Defence League, was fighting with Celtic fans after the inaugural match between the teams at Cardiff’s new stadium.

Marsh, from Barry, admitted affray and possession of an offensive weapon at Cardiff Magistrates’ Court in January and was sentenced yesterday.

He was given a four-month suspended jail term, 150 hours’ community service and ordered to pay £600 costs.

He was given a full five-year football banning order that will prevent him attending any football matches for five years.

Detective Constable Simon Chivers, of the Football Intelligence Unit, who arrested Marsh last summer, said: “Jeff Marsh is a convicted football hooligan.

“Behaviour such as he exhibited on the night will not be tolerated by Cardiff City or the police and anyone indulging in that sort of behaviour will be pursued to the fullest extent of the law, prosecuted and banned.”

It is Marsh’s first football banning order as his previous convictions for football violence came before the 1990 Football Disorder Act which introduced the banning orders.

In 1989 he was convicted of grievous bodily harm for stabbing two Manchester United supporters in Cardiff and was jailed for two years. In 1986 he was also convicted of a football-related assault in Halifax.

Marsh is an organiser of the English and Welsh Defence Leagues which describe themselves as “a ready-made army” against Muslim fundamentalists.

There have been riots and arrests in English cities, including Birmingham and Luton, which have led to scores of arrests after the group has clashed with anti-fascist campaigners. There have also been marches in Wrexham and Swansea.

The groups have been described as “divisive” and “hate-based” by Plaid Cymru AM Leanne Wood.

Wales Online

From 2010

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A HOMELESS man attacked a worker going home from a Christmas party so severely his face had to be reconstructed.

Nineteen-year-old Lee Wells, who was on bail for brandishing a hammer 10 days earlier, set on 42-year-old Robert Johnson outside the YMCA hostel in Harding Road, Hanley.

The incident occurred in the early hours of December 6 last year as Mr Johnson made his way from The Quality Hotel in Trinity Street.

He was left with a fractured jaw and eye sockets and had to undergo four operations to have plates inserted into his face.

Wells, of no fixed address, who pleaded guilty to inflicting grievous bodily harm, was sentenced at Stoke-on-Trent Crown Court yesterday.

Paul Spratt, prosecuting, said: “Mr Johnson left the Quality Hotel in Hanley some time after midnight.

“He had no other recollection of the events that occurred except that he was the subject of assault leading to substantial injuries.

“On returning home he realised he had forgotten his keys and left them at the Quality Hotel.”

Mr Johnson then returned by taxi to the hotel, where he collected his keys and set off home again.

Mr Spratt added: “It was at the point that he was walking back from Hanley town centre past the YMCA that the attack occurred. He says he was attacked but has no recollection of the attack as it occurred.”

The court heard Mr Johnson had been left with headaches, numbness in his face and difficulty eating as a result of the incident.

At the time of the attack, Wells was on bail for an incident on November 25 when he was caught with a hammer in Harding Road. On that occasion, he was in the company of two other men who were found with an African-style club and a knife.

He tried to prevent arrest by hiding in a ground floor storeroom of the hostel but was discovered.

Sarah Badrawy, defending, said Wells had experienced a very difficult upbringing. She said: “He had a number of adverse events at a crucial stage in his life.

“He suffered from rejection from both his family and rejection from his foster family.

“It is at that stage he found himself of no fixed abode. He spent his life moving from different friends’ sofas and homeless hostels.”

Referring to two psychiatric reports, Judge Granville Styler said Wells was “very dangerous young man” but said he was limited in his sentencing options.

He imposed a 12-month jail sentence for possessing an offensive weapon and affray, and 30 months consecutively for the grievous bodily harm.

He said: “The public should know that the psychiatric report says he poses a high risk of serious harm to others.”

Stoke Sentinel

Shane Martin.

Shane Martin.



A TEENAGER armed with a martial arts weapon threatened visitors and staff at South Tyneside’s hospital maternity unit.

Shane Martin and two friends were told to leave the grounds of the borough’s District Hospital after being refused entry in the early hours of November 6 last year.

Newcastle Crown Court heard that the group continued to try to get in, while women giving birth and being looked after inside could hear their drunken threats and abuse.

When a security guard tried to usher them away, Martin, 18 – who was armed with a set of nunchucks – directed a torrent of abuse and threats at him.

Judge John Milford yesterday jailed Martin, of Summerhill, Jarrow, for eight months after he pleaded guilty to having an offensive weapon and threatening behaviour.

The judge said anyone who behaves in such a way inside hospital grounds can expect to go to jail.

Debbie Breen, prosecuting, told the court Martin had turned up at the hospital in Harton Lane, South Shields, with his pals in tow, to confront a patient’s stepfather over an earlier row.

Miss Breen told the court: “The security guard said he could immediately see they had been drinking.

“They were shouting outside the doors and trying to gain access to the maternity department.”

She added: “They all became abusive towards the security guard.

“The defendant was very agitated. He is described as being in the security guard’s face.

“He was shouting and swearing, and threats were directed towards the stepfather of a patient.”

The court heard a second security guard came to try to calm the trouble, and the police were called.

While staff waited for officers to arrive, Martin was shouting “I will kill you all” and continued to hurl foul abuse.

Miss Breen said: “The verbal abuse could be heard by patients within the unit.”

By the time police arrived, Martin had thrown the nunchucks – which he did not produce during the incident – into a bush, but they were recovered by officers.

Judge Milford jailed Martin after hearing he was on bail for offences of criminal damage at the time of the incident.

He said: “Over a period of about half an hour you shouted, swore and used threatening language.

“You will go straight to custody, as will anyone who acts in this manner and carries a weapon at a hospital.”

Vic Laffey, defending, said Martin accepts he was “very foolish” that night.

Jarrow and Hebburn Gazette

FOUR men arrested on suspicion of causing disorder on the day the English Defence League protested in Leicester have appeared in court.

Officers arrested 17 people after trouble broke out on October 9 when 1,000 EDL members staged a demonstration in the city centre.

Yesterday, at Leicester Magistrates’ Court, Mark Bircham (23), of Boulter Crescent, Wigston, denied using threatening, abusive or disorderly behaviour and assaulting a police officer. He will face trial before magistrates on January 11.

Scott Kervin (30), of Castle Place, Abergele, Wales, denied having an offensive weapon, a pair of gloves containing ball bearings. He also denied using threatening, abusive or disorderly behaviour and will face trial before the city’s magistrates on January 18

Mark Turnbull (38), of Rawling Road, Gateshead, denied using threatening, abusive or disorderly behaviour and resisting a police sergeant. His trial will take place before magistrates on January 18.

Lee Whitby (27), of Harley Place, Stoke-on-Trent, denied using racially aggravated abusive words and will stand trial on November 26.

All four were released on bail on the condition they do not attend any meetings of the English Defence League, The Scottish Defence League or the Welsh Defence League or attend any anti-Islamic meetings of more than three people.

After the hearings, a Leicestershire police spokesman said: “Investigations into other offences that took place that day are still ongoing as a team of officers look into crimes reported during and after the protests.

“Detectives are speaking to witnesses and examining CCTV evidence in a bid to identify more offenders.”

This is Leicester