Northern Ireland

Man jailed for racist attack on street trader

A man who attacked a street trader and shouted racist abuse at him has been jailed for five months.

David Godfrey, 20, of Utility Street, Belfast, assaulted Mousa Gulusen and kicked over his stall, causing more than £500 damage in December 2012.

In Belfast Magistrates Court on Monday, Godfrey claimed he was so drunk he had no memory of the incident.

But prosecutors said the attack was aggravated by his level of hostility and racial motivation.

He was arrested by police at the scene of the attack in Berry Street, Belfast.

The court was told that he shouted racist abuse telling Mr Gulusen to go back to his own country.

Two others were said to have joined in the assault.

Godfrey's lawyer said he had been drinking and had "simply has no recollection of the matter".

He said Godfrey was very apologetic.

District Judge Fiona Bagnall held that the nature of the crimes merited a prison sentence.

"Given the fact this is a clearly racially-motivated attack, he's facing immediate custody," she said.

She imposed a five-month sentence for criminal damage and concurrent three and four-month terms for disorderly behaviour and assault.