Riots men in 'hyper mode'

A group of men who gathered in the street to protect businesses from looters during last summer's riots in Birmingham were in "hyper mode" on the night three men were mown down by a car, a court heard.

Haroon Jahan, 20, and brothers Shazad Ali, 30, and Abdul Musavir, 31, were hit by a black Mazda car during disorder in the Winson Green area of Birmingham in the early hours of August 10, as disorder swept across England. They were pronounced dead in hospital and eight men are charged with their murders.

Tariq Jahan, Haroon's father, told Birmingham Crown Court that he and his two sons had joined other local men to "stand up" for the community on the evening of August 9.

Prosecutor Tim Spencer QC told the court that some of a group of between 50 and 100 Asian men on the streets were armed with sticks, batons and bats, and that other members of the Asian group had picked up bricks or rocks after beginning to gather at around 9.30pm on August 9.

Mr Jahan said that in the hours leading up to the fatal impact, which happened on Dudley Road shortly after 1.15am, some of the young men in the group had covered their faces and were armed with sticks and stones, which were flung at passing vehicles.

He confirmed a statement he made in a police interview last August that the younger contingent of the group "were in hyper mode", adding that some of the men were "riled up" and he had tried to calm them down.

Mr Jahan said he saw some of the group throw stones or bricks at a passing Saab car, chasing it around 20 feet along the road after the rear windscreen was smashed.

He told the court that a passenger in the vehicle had grinned at and "wound up" the crowd, and that most cars driving through the area were left alone.

He said: "If the occupants were wearing balaclavas then yes, the cars would more than likely have been attacked."

Ryan Goodwin, 21, Shaun Flynn, 26, Juan Ruiz-Gaviria, 31, Joshua Donald, 27, Everton Graham, 30, Adam King, 24, Ian Beckford, 30, and Aaron Parkins, 18, all deny three counts of murder. The trial will continue on Thursday.

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