A gang of English Defence League supporters caused terror when they attacked a pub as an anti-racism rock concert was being staged.
Nine members of the gang were handed community sentences yesterday (Sept 3) after a court heard how windows and doors were smashed as bricks and bottles were hurled at Joseph’s Well in Leeds city centre.
Leeds Crown Court heard the gang members turned up at the venue and tried to get into to the Rock Against Racism event.
Violence erupted when one member of the gang, Mark Johnson, 31, tried to push past door staff but was resisted and suffered an injury. A man who was at the event with his son was hit in the mouth with a missile thrown by a gang member and had a tooth knocked out.
Andrew Stranex, prosecuting, said members of the group were chanting “EDL” in reference to the far right group. Others were heard to say: “We are not racist, we just hate Muslims.”
Members of the gang, aged between 14 and 31, were arrested after CCTV images were circulated to the media after the incident, which happened 2.30pm on June 18 last year.
Mr Stranex said the concert was supposed to be a peaceful event but when it was advertised on Facebook organisers had received warnings from EDL members that there may be trouble. One message read: “We will smash the place up.”
One member of the gang, soldier Cavan Langfield, learnt yesterday that he had been discharged from the Yorkshire Regiment ahead of sentencing.
There sentenced were:
Mark Johnson, 31, of Top of the Hill, Thurstonland, Huddersfield, 12 months imprisonment, suspended for 18 months, 150 hours unpaid work and £400 compensation
Matthew Bermingham, 18, of Eton Avenue, Huddersfield, one year community order, 150 hours unpaid work and £100 compensation.
Aaron Childs, 20, of Chestnut Street, Huddersfield, one year community order, 150 hours unpaid work and £200 compensation.
Jonathan Foy, 19, of Fillingfir Road, West Park. Leeds, one year community order, 150 hours unpaid work and £100 compensation.
Joseph Harman, 20, of Cherrywood Gardens, Whinmoor, Leeds, one year community order, 200 hours unpaid work, £500 compensation.
Cavan Langfield, 18, of Stratford Close, Huddersfield, one year community order, 200 hours unpaid work and £250 compensation.
Tom Maudsley, 18, of Bridon Way, Cleckheaton, one year community order, 200 hours unpaid work and £100 compensation.
Two youths, aged 15 and 17, who cannot be named, were made the subject of 12 month referral orders.