Racist car hooligans plead guilty

By Jonathan Kalmus, May 12, 2011

Two men who terrorised Jewish women and children with a speeding car while one of them screamed threats to kill Jews have been convicted of intentional harassment.

Aaron Hanson, 20, from Stalybridge in Tameside, near Manchester, pleaded guilty at Manchester Crown Court on Monday after two witnesses came forward to give evidence. He and Liam Martin, 21, also of Stalybridge, were in one of four cars seen driving erratically in Broughton Park, north Manchester, last March. After antisemitic abuse was shouted, witnesses followed the cars and alerted a traffic police officer who gave chase and arrested the two men.

Hanson pleaded guilty to one count of racially aggravated intentional harassment, alarm or distress, which carries a maximum prison sentence of two years. He was heard shouting: "We are going to f--k up all the Jews," and "you f--ing Jews we are going to kill you all."

Martin pleaded guilty to a lesser public order offence and risks six months imprisonment.

Greater Manchester Police said they were not seeking the drivers of the other vehicles and were satisfied that the prosecutions dealt with the abusive behaviour.

A spokesperson for the Crown Prosecution Service said: "This has been a very distressing case for those involved and we would like to thank the witnesses from the Jewish community for coming forward and providing statements to the police which has led to the guilty pleas from the defendants."

A Community Security Trust spokesman said: "This shows it is always worth reporting antisemitic abuse to the police and CST even if nobody was hurt. The police and CPS will take racist abuse seriously. We congratulate the witnesses for giving evidence which secured these convictions which will hopefully help to protect the community in the future."

Both men will be sentenced later this month.

Last updated: 3:39pm, May 12 2011