Jail for Blackburn men who attacked anti-facist campaigners
7:00pm Friday 27th September 2013 in News
TWO far-right sympathisers from Blackburn, who were part of a group that ambushed people going to an anti-fascist benefit gig, have been jailed.
Shane Calvert, 32, of Shetland Close, and Peter Hawley, 53, of Ailsa Road, were sentenced at Liverpool Crown Court for their part in the attack, in which the victims were left ‘battered and bruised’.
The assault happened in Liverpool in July when a gang of nine men, known to include seven of the defendants, rushed towards the victims, throwing punches and kicks.
The violence then spilled from the street into the nearby Tabac café where the violence continued among shocked diners.
Witnesses later told officers there were two distinct groups involved in the fighting, one clearly doing the attacking and the other being attacked.
A Merseyside police inspector was on duty that evening and he saw between eight and 10 men running from the scene.
They included Michael Kearns, 41, from Liverpool, Liam Pinkham, 25, from Wallasey, Matthew Coates, 22, from Southport, Steven Dumont, 18, from Liverpool, as well as the two Blackburn men.
They were given six years and one month behing bars between them.
Nathan Smith, 23, also from Liverpool, failed to appear at court and a bench warrant was issued for him to be returned for sentence.
They all pleaded guilty to violent disorder at an earlier hearing.
Det Con Mike Russell, of the North West Counter Terrorism unit, said: “Not only did these men descend on the victims, but they carried out the attack in front of members of the public.
“They knew that there was a Unite Against Fascism benefit event taking place in the city centre that night and they specifically targeted their victims following various disputes between the two opposing groups.
“As a result of the investigation, the men have been convicted of violent disorder.”
Anybody with information about domestic extremism should contact the confidential anti-terrorist hotline on 0800 789321.
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