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Thursday, 31 July 2014

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Gang's terrifying racist abuse of Carlisle takeaway staff

A former Carlisle soldier just released from jail for publicly burning the Koran was among nearly a dozen people who racially abused two take-away workers.

The city’s crown court heard that Andrew Ryan, 33, and his brother Matthew Ryan, 27, were part of a group who threatened and racially abused two Turkish men at Manhattan Pizza in Botchergate last year.

The Ryan brothers, along with three other men and four women, pleaded guilty to two charges of using racially aggravated threatening behaviour.

All admitted that their abuse of the two takeaway workers had been inspired by their mistaken belief that the men were Pakistani.

All previously denied the offences and had been due to face a trial this week.

Before the group are sentenced on Thursday, Judge Paul Batty QC will be shown a video of the ugly incident in which they were involved on May 20 last year.

The CCTV shows the group massing in a threatening manner outside the takeaway shop shortly before 8pm.

They are seen angrily remonstrating with the two Turkish workers, some of the group ranting and repeatedly jabbing their fingers as they spill into the shop.

One of the men in the group flicked a lighted cigarette into the shop, and a drinks can is also tossed inside.

At one stage, the video shows one of the defendants striding into the shop and throwing a chair.

The terrifying incident came shortly after Andrew Ryan was released from a 70-day jail term for burning the Koran in Carlisle city centre. He claimed he committed that offence with the aim of causing offence to only Islamic extremists.

The defendants in the dock yesterday, who all admitted the two offences – one charge for each of the Turkish workers targeted – were:

Andrew Leslie Ryan, of Marina Crescent, Currock; and his brother Matthew Thomas Ryan, 27, also of Marina Crescent, Currock; Ian James Bradshaw, 26, of Harrison Street, Currock; Craig William Metcalfe, 30, of Gilsland Road, Durranhill; William Ewings, 43, of Gilford Crescent, Harraby; Kerry Victoria Wilson, 40, of Ridley Road, Currock; Louise Annette Leslie, 40, of Buchanan Road, Currock; Rebecca Louise Wardle, 24, of Eden Park Crescent, Botcherby; and Donna Marie Beattie, 22, of Sybil Street, off Greystone Road, Carlisle.

Michael Wilson, 29, of Cant Crescent, Upperby, admitted the same two offences during an earlier court hearing.

An eleventh defendant, Tracie Wilkinson, 35, of Levens Drive, Morton, was not in court. She has yet to enter her pleas to the same two allegations admitted by her co defendants yesterday.

Defence barrister Alison Whalley, for Kerry Wilson, said her client’s guilty pleas was entered on the basis that she did not use racist language, and did not go into the takeaway shop.

She took part in the threatening racist abuse of the workers by banging on the window, said the barrister.

Judge Batty refused to grant adjournments to two of the defendants – Andrew Ryan and his brother – so that detailed background reports could be prepared, commenting that the case had dragged on for long enough.

He told the defendants: “I will make this abundantly clear: I have not decided yet what the level of sentence is. This is a serious matter and I want to view the CCTV and make a judgement.”

Adjourning sentencing until Thursday, he said the case had already cost an “inordinate” sum of public money and he was not prepared to see any more spent by granting adjournments for detailed background reports.

He ordered that summary “stand-down” probation reports could be prepared on the defendants by probation staff before sentencing.

Judge Batty imposed a 7pm to 7am curfew on all the defendants until their return to court later this week.

He added: “I suggest to each of you that you take your position extremely seriously until I decide what sentence is appropriate.”

Have your say

Hi,

Due to the nature of the posts being submitted for this article, commenting has been closed.

Ian
Online editor

Posted by Ian on 7 February 2012 at 16:18

i dont think prison sentences would bother many of them as they are politically motivated but at least it would give the people affected some respite.

Posted by shaun W on 7 February 2012 at 13:45

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