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Two teens who abused gay man on tube both spared jail

One of the victims was placed in a headlock and forced to apologise for being gay

2018-05-14

Two teenagers who attacked a gay man on a tube in London and made him apologise for his sexuality have been spared jail.

The two boys – aged 16 and 17 – were drunk on Lambrini when they threatened a group of friends on the Jubilee Line who were in fancy dress for a Halloween party.

The group were confronted as they got on the train in October last year and a 19-year-old man was put in a headlock, leaving him struggling for air and demanded he apologise for being gay, Bexley Youth Court heard.

All the victims were travelling westbound when the defendants boarded the train and began abusing them and using homophobic slurs.

Some of the victims managed to film some of the assault on their phones before it was snatched from him.

The footage was used by the British Transport Police helped locate the pair and they were arrested in April.

The court heard that the two boys used homophobic slurs such as “f****t” and “queer” and became violent when they were confronted.

Prosecutor Samantha Mitchell said: “He felt a right arm around his neck, gripping really tightly, he felt like he was being strangled and was struggling to breathe.

“A male took his phone out of his hand and another male said, ‘fucking apologise you fucking queer’.”

The phone was returned to the victim and they reported the attack to the police and in statements, they both said they were left anxious on public transport.

One of them said: “I don’t think I deserve to be assault simply for being gay, and in this day and age I would have expected society to be more accepting.”

The younger defendant is set to sit his GCSEs in summer and wants to train as a mechanic while the other is training to be a bricklayer.

Both boys have apologised and claimed they were just drunk and have since quit alcohol.

Magistrate Glenford Shipley-Younan said: “You are both in court for a very nasty and unprovoked attack on a train late at night on people who were just going about their social evening.

“The people who were attacked and abused by yourself would have been extremely upset and frightened by that behaviour.

“Both of you said you had been drinking that night, therefore your inhibitions had been lost. This must not happen again.”

They were ordered to pay £150 compensation to their victims as well as £20 each in costs.