Radical Salafi/Deobandi Muslims are facing jail for attacking a group of Shi’ites in what is believed to be the first case of Muslim sectarian violence on the streets of Britain.
Violence broke out on London’s Edgware Road, a well-known Shia area, on May 10 last year during a protest organised by radical preacher Anjem Choudary calling for jihad in Syria.
Two men were beaten to the ground with placards and wooden sticks. One was so badly injured he had blood streaming down his face after being kicked in the head as he lay helpless on the floor.
Ginger-haired Jordan Horner, 20, part of the Sunni sect, attacked a man after calling him a ‘kuffir’, or non-believer.
Other members of the Sunni group including Mohammed Almagir, 34, Mirza Ali, 38, Mohad Uddin, 36, and Kamran Khan, 29, also joined in.
Alex Chalk, prosecuting, told the Old Bailey that the group were shouting ‘Shias are kuffirs. They are the enemy within. They are evil’ as they carried out the attack.
He said: ‘This is a case about sectarian violence in west London.
‘On Friday May 10, 2013, these defendants attended an unauthorised anti-Shia march advertised on Twitter.
‘The protestors, several of whom were carrying banners bearing inflammatory anti-Shia slogans, passed along Edgware Road – an area well known for its established Shia community.
‘They were carrying placards calling for jihad in Syria and were publicising their intention to march to the Syrian Embassy.
‘Shortly after the marchers turned around at the Marble Arch end and retraced their steps northwards, violence broke out.
‘Two men were assaulted with fists and flagpoles. One was beaten on the ground, and the other, Fahad Fahad, was left with blood streaming from a wound to his head.’
The violence broke out while Salafi Anjem Choudhary was being interviewed on camera by a journalist.
The court heard a group of up to 50 protestors congregated outside London Central Mosque after the conclusion of Friday prayers at 2pm.
That afternoon Mohammed El-Hariri, a Shia Muslim who has run a business in the area for 12 years, was walking along Edgware Road on his way to meet his friend, Fahad Fahad.
He noticed a large group dressed in Islamic salaffi dress.
Violence: Other members of the Sunni group including Mohammed Almagir, 34, (pictured) joined in after Horner attacked a man calling him a ‘kaffir’, or non-believer
They were protesting against Shia Muslims, chanting sectarian slogans and carrying inflammatory banners.
The banners were in Arabic and contained phrases including ‘Shias are unbelievers’ and ‘Shia will destroy Islam and Muslims.’
Other banners condemned Alawites, the Shia denomination of the Syrian leader, Bashar Al-Assad.
Mr El-Hariri started to talk to one of the group of protesters – in particular Horner, who he described as a white male with a shaved head and a ginger beard.
As he did so he was attacked while another man poured water on him. He was then punched repeatedly by other members of the group.
Guilty: Mohan Uddin (left) and Mirza Ali (not pictured) were also convicted of violent disorder, while Kamran Khan (right) was convicted of affray over the incident.
His friend Mr Fahad was hit with a flagpole and kicked in the face, head and arms.
As he was set upon Mr Fahad could hear his attackers saying: ‘This is what is going to happen to all Shia.’
Mr Chalk said: ‘Mr Fahad feared for his life, until he was dragged to safety. He was covered in blood.’
Horner, Ali, Almagir and Uddin were convicted of violent disorder, and Kamran Khan was convicted of affray over the incident.
Protest: The violence broke out during a protest organised by radical preacher Anjem Choudary (pictured) calling for jihad in Syria
They are due to be sentenced tomorrow at the Old Bailey.
Uddin and Khan will also be sentenced, along with eight others, for their part in an attack on a white man in Oxford street on May 18 last year.
On that occasion the victim, Andrew White, was attacked with a hospital crutch before being kicked and punched to the ground.
Postman Khan faces a separate charge of stealing mail for which he will also be dealt with by Judge Paul Worsley QC.