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Elm Park restaurant owner admits hurling abuse at reporter at 'Free Tommy Robinson' rally

PUBLISHED: 14:00 10 January 2019 | UPDATED: 14:00 10 January 2019

William Eve from Rainham appeared at Westminster Magistrates’ Court today. Photo: @SoniaGallegoAJE

William Eve from Rainham appeared at Westminster Magistrates' Court today. Photo: @SoniaGallegoAJE

@SoniaGallegoAJE

William Eve is the owner of The Bank Restaurant in Elm Park.

The owner of an Elm Park restaurant has admitted being caught on camera hurling abuse at a woman at a “Free Tommy Robinson” rally - but denies it was religiously aggravated.

William Eve, 57, of Adnams Walk in Rainham - who also owns The Bank Restaurant in Elm Park - admitted one count of using threatening, abusive or insulting words or behaviour to cause harassment, alarm or distress when he confronted Al Jazeera reporter Sonia Gallego during the rally for the English Defence League founder in Westminster on July 14 last year.

But Eve pleaded not guilty to one count of religiously aggravated intentional harassment, alarm or distress when he appeared at Westminster Magistrates’ Court today.

The charges relate to the same incident.

He is due to go on trial next month.

Opening the case against Eve, prosecutor Robert Simpson said: “This happened in July last year.

“The complainant is someone who is a reporter for Al Jazeera. She was conducting interviews and recording them.

“She was approached by the defendant, who asked who she was, he found out and made the comment ‘So you’re Muslim-backed’.

“He went on to say she was stupid and called her a slag,” the court heard.

Eve also “jabbed a finger towards” Ms Gallego, the prosecutor said.

Deputy district judge Jim Astle released Eve on bail until his trial at City of London Magistrates’ Court on Thursday, February 21.

Eve, wearing a dark jacket, black-rimmed glasses, a light shirt and a scarf, made no comment as he left the court, with a hat pulled over his face.

The charges relate to a rally held while Robinson was in custody for committing contempt of court.

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