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August 26, 2022 2:32 pm
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Man Traveled 200 Miles to Assault Jews, UK Prosecutors Allege

avatar by Dion J. Pierre

An image of the suspect in an assault on a Jewish man in the Stamford Hill neighborhood of London on August 18, 2021. Photo: London Metropolitan Police.

The United Kingdom’s Crown Prosecution Service (CPS) is trying the case of Abdullah Qureshi, a man who officials say trekked 200 miles from West Yorkshire to Stamford Hill to assault members of the Jewish community last year

“The prosecution’s case is that Mr. Qureshi had travelled all the way from West Yorkshire and specifically went to Hackney, a place that is specifically associated with the Jewish community, to deliberately target members of the Jewish community and carry out religiously motivated attacks,” prosecutor Varinder Hayre told a magistrates’ court on Thursday.

The assaults were all carried out last August. In the first incident, a 30-year-old man was struck on the head with a bottle, while the target of the second incident was a 14-year-old boy who was physically assaulted. The third victim was a 64-year-old man who was brutally punched in the face, causing him to fall and break a bone in his foot.

Metropolitan Police charged Qureshi with one count of racially or religiously aggravated wounding or grievous bodily harm, four counts of racially or religiously aggravated common assault and one count of racially or religious aggravated criminal damage.

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Qureshi has confessed to committing two of the assaults but denies that they were motivated by antisemitism. He is, the Evening Standard reported, also disputing the injuries reported by his victims, one of whom lost consciousness and broke a bone when the impact of Qureshi’s blow slammed him into a wall.

Qureshi has been free on bail with orders not to return to Stamford Hill, a London neighborhood where frequent antisemitic assaults keep the Jewish community on high alert.

Last month, a woman wielding a wooden stick approached a Jewish woman near the Seven Sisters area and declared “I am doing it because you are Jew,” while striking her over the head and pouring liquid on her.

In separate episodes reported by Shomrim, a Jewish neighborhood watch group, a woman was seen threatening Jewish congregants leaving Shabbat services on Friday night, shouting, “f*** you Jews, I will kill you.” Another account described “hundreds of Jewish men and boys” similarly harassed as they returned from synagogue.

This year, Metropolitan Police has so far recorded 377 antisemitic hate crimes in London.

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