Four found guilty of Redbridge mosque attack
PUBLISHED: 15:20 19 August 2011 | UPDATED: 15:40 19 August 2011
Four thugs who bombarded a mosque and an imam with bricks in a racist attack are facing jail.
The group of youths tried to storm Redbridge Islamic Centre, Eastern Avenue, Redbridge, after taunting worshippers arriving for evening prayers with racist chants.
The front window was smashed and the imam Shafeel Begg was hit by a brick as he tried to pursue them on March 24.
Rocky Beale, 21, of Purleigh Avenue, Woodford Green, Eliot Jones, 19, of no fixed address, Matthew Stephenson, 18, of Burrow Road, Hainault and a 16-year-old who cannot be named because of his age, were convicted of violent disorder at Snaresbrook Crown Court after just 90 minutes deliberation by the jury on Wednesday.
They will be sentenced on September 28.
Two others, Daniel Leal, 19, of Queenborough Gardens, Gants Hill and Ryan Jones, 23, of no fixed address were cleared of violent disorder after a two-week trial.
Pam Oon, prosecuting, said the 16-year-old “threw a brick, which smashed the front window of the mosque”.
He and another of the attackers then ran inside, and Mr Begg and caretaker Mohammed Wahud gave chase.
“In the process the caretaker was injured by some broken glass,” said Ms Oon.
“When the imam and the caretaker came out of the mosque, the youths were still throwing bricks and shouting abuse, before they ran down Eastern Avenue towards Redbridge Tube station.”
The 16-year-old told police he had been attacked by a group of men from the mosque with iron bars.
Five nearby parked cars and a number of neighbouring homes were also damaged before the gang arrived at the mosque.