Teen must pay £1000 after shul vandalism

After the attack, neighbours rallied

After the attack, neighbours rallied

A Muslim teenager has been ordered to pay a Jewish community compensation after he smashed its synagogue windows with a baseball bat.

Junaid Javed must pay £1,000 to Edinburgh Hebrew Congregation after admitting the attack had been motivated by antisemitism.

But the congregation’s Rabbi David Rose expressed surprise that Javed had instructed his lawyer to tell the court he had visited the shul to apologise after the incident.

Rabbi Rose said he did not recall meeting the teenager.

The 17-year-old, of Minto Street, Edinburgh, was arrested on March 12 after he broke eight panes of glass in the front windows of the Salisbury Road shul.

Sheriff Derrick McIntyre said the window smashing had been “disgraceful behaviour”.

Following Javed’s appearance at Edinburgh Sheriff Court last Thursday, Rabbi Rose said: “I got letters from various people and from the Muslim community but I did not meet the perpetrator. He never came here.

“The incident was kept quite quiet and the community reacted calmly to it, but it was not very nice all the same.

“It highlights the more serious issue of antisemitism in the Muslim community which needs to be addressed. It is a problem and I am very disturbed by some of the attitudes of Muslims in Edinburgh, although we generally have very good relations with their community.”

Mark Gardner, Community Security Trust communications director, said: “This was a very disturbing act of antisemitic vandalism and CST is broadly satisfied that justice has been seen to be done.

“We hope that the perpetrator has indeed learnt the stupidity of his actions.”

A second man, Jhangir Khan, 22, was also charged with smashing the windows and carrying an offensive weapon, but at an earlier hearing in April he pleaded not guilty and the case against him was later dropped.

Commenting on the dropped case against Mr Khan, a Crown Office spokesman said: “Prosecutors have a duty to consider pleas offered by the defence and will accept pleas that are considered to be in the public interest, taking into account all of the facts and circumstances of the case and available evidence.

“Pleas in this case were accepted for evidential reasons.”

    Last updated: 4:20pm, October 8 2009