Judge heavily criticises nightclub for kicking out drunk teenager who was then abducted and raped on streets

    A judge has heavily criticised Snobs nightclub in Birmingham after ejecting a 'drunk student' who was then abducted and horrifically raped.

    Judge Mary Stacy accused Snobs of being partly to blame for the attack after the 19-year-old victim was 'abandoned' in the city centre to be picked off 'like prey'.

    It is believed that bouncers removed the University of Birmingham student from the venue after she collapsed and became seperated from her friends. A court heard how she was then lured into a transit van by Zaheer Abbas, 30, and Sajad Hussain, 35, and taken to an industrial estate where she was brutally raped and assaulted in an hour-long ordeal.

    Abbas was jailed for 11 years after being convicted of rape, while Hussain was sentenced to six years after being found guilty of sexual assault.

    Sentencing at Birmingham Crown Court, Judge Stacy criticised the management at Snobs for the venue's cheap drinks promotions and accused them of acting 'irresponsible towards their customers'.

    She said: "Something needs to be said about Snobs nightclub. We have heard how the establishment carries on serving drinks to students who have had far more than enough to drink.

    "They then fail to take responsibility for the students, they removed [her] after she collapsed inside.

    "Snobs abandonded her on the street where she was prey to the likes of Abbas and Hussain. The security officer is not personally to blame, it was a failure of Snobs itself to fail to put procedures in place, for example by arranging taxis to take them [students] home.

    "The disregard for customers allowed for the circumstances for this crime to occur."

    The judge said that the case called into question the club's fitness to hold a licence, and referred the venue to licenscing chiefs at Birmingham City Council. She also vowed to contact colleges and universities warning them of Snobs' cheap drinks promotions targeting 'young and vulnerable students'.

    She added: "This was a deeply destressing case. The distress on the face of the jurors was all too evident and understandable."

    Abbas was convicted by a jury last December, while Hussain was convicted last month. Both trials were shown chilling CCTV of the pair outside the club before the attack.

    Jurors heard the victim, who cannot be named for legal reasons, was ejected by Snobs' security staff at around 3.30am on February 20 last year.

    Abbas and Hussain, along with others, were then seen leading her to Abbas' transit bain. She was then driven to an industrial estate in the Nechells area of the city where she was raped by Abbas and sexually assualted by Hussain. The horrific ordeal lasted over an hour before the twisted pair dropped the victim back at her student accommodation.

    The court heard the student, who had been a virgin, had since dropped out of her course at the University of Birmingham.

    Judge Stacy told the wicked pair: "What you both did to her had devastating consequences. After achieving her goal of getting into a top university,  because of your actions she has dropped out.

    "She no longer goes out on her own and feels wary and fearful.

    "She was clearly abducted, she had to be held up and was unable to walk unaided. She was totally incapable.

    "Abbas, you took her virginity from her which can never be reclaimed, you took her innocence, and ruined her time in Birmingham.

    "Both of you have shown no remorse and have cynically attempted to portray her as a sexual predator, when the exact opposite was true."

    Abbas, of Small Heath, Birmingham, and Hussain, of Bordesley Green, Birmingham, denied doing anything wrong but were both convicted by seperate juries.

    The judge praised their victim who endured two trials, saying: "I pay tribute to her strength and courage coming forward. Her bravery and dignity impressed everyone at court.

    "Her actions resulted in you both being brought to justice."

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    Public given chance to quiz Asian politicians and business leaders on EU referendum

    The public are being given the opportunity to quiz a panel of politicians and business leaders on the European Union referendum this week, including Indian-born West Midlands MEP, Neena Gill and national board member of Vote Leave, Saqib Bhatti.

    Birmingham City University is hosting ‘The Future of Europe’ debate on Thursday (March 26) which will feature panel speakers from both sides of the discussion, who will address key issues and take questions from the audience.

    Alongside Ms Gill and Mr Bhatti, the event also features renowned economist Vicky Pryce, UKIP MEP James Carver, Africans for Britain President Jonathan Barcena and former Conservative MEP Philip Bushill-Matthews. The debate will be chaired by international journalist Frances Robinson.

    Neena Gill, West Midlands MEP

    Neena Gill, West Midlands MEP

    Each panel member will be given the opportunity to put forward their case before members of the audience have to the chance to ask their questions.

    The debate will address the potential impact of leaving the European Union on the West Midlands, as well as nationally. The EU referendum is set to take place on Thursday 23 June with politicians and business leaders divided.

    Saquib Bhatti, Vote Leave, said:

    "I want Britain to Vote Leave because for me the European Union is a hangover from the 1950s which is unfit for 21st Century Britain. We are a global nation and we should have the versatility and flexibility to build relationships around the world as we see fit and not be shackled to a declining undemocratic trading bloc which is cumbersome and slow to respond to modern day challenges.”

    As well as his role in Vote Leave, Mr Bhatti is also Secretary General of Muslims for Britain, a national cross party group that was set up to engage British Muslims in the EU referendum debate and who are actively campaigning for Britain to leave the European Union.

    He added:

    “On 23rd June we have the opportunity to redefine our relationship with the European Union, still engage with them and deal with them but also to look outwards to opportunities across the world.

    “What this means for us on a daily basis is that we can come out of a political structure where we have to compete with 27 other states all vying for their own national interest, and instead start having our politicians only being accountable to us and looking at opportunities to spur growth in our region, invest in our infrastructure and create jobs and long term prosperity."

    Mr Bhatti is a chartered accountant and a Director at Younis Bhatti & Co. Limited, catering for the small to medium enterprise market. He sits on a number of key and strategic boards around the City of Birmingham.

    The debate, which takes place at the University’s Curzon building  this evening between 6.15pm and 8.00pm, comes after figures last week revealed almost half of university students in Birmingham didn’t know when the EU referendum was taking place.

    Neena Gill, West Midlands MEP, said:

    “Young people will be amongst those most affected if we leave the EU but they are also the least likely to vote. That is why I am really looking forward to speaking at BCU’s future of Europe event – I hope it will encourage younger voters to go to the polling station on June 23rd.

    “This is the most important political decision that many of us will ever make – and I will be there to ensure that everyone has the clear information they need so they don’t get lost in fearmongering stories and distorted facts

    “Here in the West Midlands we receive millions of pounds in EU funding to help regenerate our towns and cities, support local businesses and allow universities to carry out cutting-edge research.

    “Our EU membership makes it easier to travel, work and study across Europe by guaranteeing that you have rights, like guaranteed annual leave and healthcare, in every EU country. The UK is stronger, safer and better off as part of the EU.”

    Before entering politics, Neena spent over 18 years working in social housing in a variety of inner-city areas across the UK to tackle issues of social deprivation and homelessness – including setting up the country’s first Asian only sheltered accommodation. Nina was born in Ludhiana, India.

    For more information and to book free tickets visit: www.bcu.ac.uk/futureofeurope

     

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    REGIONAL NEWS: Zaber The Man!

    For a long time, Asians have been on the periphery of most combat sports. One potential reason could be the potential traditional negative stigma attached to people of Asian origin being involved in some types of sport, but these days thankfully things are looking a bit brighter.

    Although there has been progress in sports such as football and cricket, it could be argued that combat sports such as MMA and boxing has seen a massive recent influx of Asian talent. The Asian Sunday sports team have been very privileged to work with talent such as Shoaib Yousuf, Faz Ali, Qais Ashfaq and Ismail Khan amongst others who are shining in a wide range of combat sports.

    Here though we take a look at another Asian talent, boxer Manny ‘Pac Man’ Zaber. Local lad Zaber resides in Birmingham but is initially from Berkshire, and will be looking to fight in his sixth professional bout on 14th May.

    Manny boasts of a perfect 100% record in the lightweight division with five wins from five since his pro debut in 2015. This confident 21-year old has high hopes for his future and aims to emulate hero Mike Tyson and become a world champion.

    The Asian Sunday sports desk will be sure to keep you up to date with his progress.

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    REGIONAL NEWS: Nuneaton Food Festival raises thousands of pounds for refugees

    A community food festival in Nuneaton has raised £2,500 to provide vital aid to refugees.

    Organised by Yaseen Sheikh, a member of charity Penny Appeal’s #TeamOrange volunteer family, the event was part of his fundraising efforts ahead of his half marathon on 28th February. In addition to seeking sponsorship from friends and family, Yaseen wanted to host events that everyone could gNuneaton food fest 8et involved in, so that more people could help refugees.

    Working with nine dedicated volunteers from the community, and with support from Haroon Mota, Penny Appeal’s Fundraising Manager, Yaseen had just two weeks to promote the Food Festival. Thanks to local businesses including Friends Corner, Sundarbon Tandoori, Shahi Balti and City Pizza, as well as the many volunteers and supporters, the event was a huge success.

    Yaseen said: “On the day we had 25 amazing #TeamOrange volunteers and were overwhelmed by the support from the community. Everything was gone in just one hour, and we raised a magnificent £2,259.48 for Penny Appeal’s Refugee Emergency campaign.

    Nuneaton food fest 3“We enjoyed all sorts of tasty treats, from freshly barbecued meat and a selection of curries and spicy savouries, to traditional Kenyan dishes and a whole host of cakes and desserts!”

    Haroon added: “I’m always impressed by the dedication of our volunteers and am delighted to see Yaseen and his team’s hard work pay off. The event was a huge success and illustrated perfectly the generosity of the Nuneaton  community in helping those who are less fortunate.”

    Idris Sheikh was moved to attend the event by the harrowing stories of thousands of refugees making the dangerous crossing to Europe. “Seeing those poor children die at sea is terrible, you just can’t begin to imagine the desperate situations their families are facing,” he commented. Mr Sheikh has generously made a donation to bring the total from the event to £2,500.

    To donate to Yaseen’s fundraising, visit: http://www.justgiving.com/yas-nuneaton or text YASS85 £XX to 70070.

    To donate to Penny Appeal’s Refugee Emergency campaign and find out more about the  #TeamOrange volunteer family, visit www.pennyappeal.org or call 03000 11 11 11.

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