Protesters did no more than act in self defence while standing together against a “cauldron of hatred” from Nazi thugs, the Rotherham 12 trial heard.
Michael Mansfield QC, defending two of the men who are accused of violent disorder, said the “air was filled with fear” after the people of the town were “besieged and plagued”by “toxic” fascist groups who marched 14 times in 14 months.
An 81-year-old grandfather Mushin Ahmed was kicked and stamped to death in a brutal murder.
He died days before a march by Nazi group Britain First on 5 September last year.
Asian men, known as the Rotherham 12, were charged with violent disorder after a peaceful counter protest against.
A charge of possessing an offensive weapon against one of the defendants, Asif Zaman, was withdrawn on the instructions of the judge.
“The fear was not a fantasy—it was a reality,” Mr Mansfield told Sheffield Crown Court.
See also… The Wellgate Riot Trial
A note for commenters: This is an ongoing trial and it is very difficult therefore for readers to make a comment that could be published without falling foul of legal constraints designed to ensure a fair trial.
For those who make comments I cannot approve at the moment, should keep those ideas until the verdicts are out, Rik.
I apologise to Regular Reader and Woody for taking their comments down, they were in danger of going too far down the line, I warned commenters to avoid above. Held up comments will be published after we have the verdicts, Rik.