Derby

Derby pair deny homophobic hate charges

Two Derby men have denied charges of stirring up hatred on the grounds of sexual orientation.

It is the first such prosecution since laws outlawing homophobia came into force in March 2010 and relates to leaflets distributed in July last year.

Razwan Javed, 30, and Kabir Ahmed, 27, pleaded not guilty at Derby Magistrates Court while a third, Ihjaz Ali, facing the same charge, did not enter a plea.

All defendants were bailed to appear at Derby Crown Court on 24 March.

The charges relate to a leaflet entitled "The Death Penalty?" which were handed out near the Jamia Mosque in Derby and posted through letter boxes in the city.

Mr Javed, 30, of Wilfred Street, and Mr Ahmed, 27, of Madley Street, face two charges of distributing threatening written material intending to stir up hatred on the grounds of sexual orientation.

Mr Ali, 41, of Fairfax Road, Derby, faces four counts of the same charge.

Umer Javed, 37, of Whittaker Street, Derby, and Mehboob Hussain 44, of Rose Hill Street, Normanton, also appeared charged with delivering the leaflets but did not enter a plea.

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