Thugs attack rabbi in Golders Green

A rabbi needed eight stitches in a head wound after a vicious assault by two bottle-wielding men in Golders Green in the early hours of Sunday morning.

Rabbi Yossi Simon, a mohel, and his two sons had been loading a vehicle at the London Jewish Family Centre with equipment for a Lag b'Omer parade in Stamford Hill.

"We were approached by two men who were very drunk and started throwing bottles at me," Rabbi Simon said. "Then they started punching me in the face. It was a frightening experience.

"My son Menachem, who is 15, tried to call the police, so they punched him in the face as well. There were other people around but no one came over to help. The men ran away before the police arrived."

He returned home, where his wife called the Hatzolah emergency service. "They said I should go to hospital to check for concussion and to have my ear dressed properly. I was in a lot of pain. But I couldn't go then as I was organising the parade and I was worried that I might get stuck for hours in casualty. I wore a hood over my face so no one would see my injuries except if they got very close."

A Barnet police spokesman said the two men were thought to have been involved in an incident minutes before the attack on Rabbi Simon, when a woman driver was hit in the face by an egg thrown from a passing car. The woman saw the car stop further along the road and two men get out. They were verbally abusing the rabbi and then attacked him. They were with another man and a woman.

All four were white and in their early 20s. One of the attackers wore a green hoodie, the other was in a black one.

    Last updated: 12:53pm, May 6 2010