EDL member jailed for Liverpool Street football brawl

An English Defence League (EDL) member has been jailed for nine months after taking part in a pre-arranged brawl between football supporters in London.

Joel Titus, 19, took part in the “pitched battle” between supporters of Brentford and Leyton Orient outside Liverpool Street station in May 2010.

Titus, of Pinner, north-west London, and five other men admitted affray.

The brawl, during which people punched, kicked and threw bottles, was by “prior arrangement”, the Old Bailey heard.

Dean Wells, 22, of Isleworth, west London, was jailed for 12 months, David Mitchell, 19, of Littlehampton, West Sussex, was sentenced to seven months and Andrew Hudson, 26, of Hornchurch, Essex, was given an eight-month jail term.

Steven Donovan, 20, of Hayes, west London, and Thomas Armstrong, 24, of Woodford Green, Essex, were each given suspended six-month sentences.

‘Frightening spectacle’

Judge Timothy Pontius said all six had taken part in a “disgraceful display of violence” that terrified ordinary people using a busy railway station as bottles were thrown across the street during the fight.

The “pitched battle” must have been a “frightening spectacle”, he said, which required a “firm deterrent message”.

Titus, an A-level student, has previously been convicted of threatening behaviour for swearing at a police officer who was trying to break up a fight. He will be sentenced in May.

The incident took place while he was on bail following the football brawl, the Old Bailey heard.

He also has a previous caution for battery after hitting a journalist during a right-wing demonstration in December 2009.

The teenager is a prominent member of the EDL and has been interviewed on the BBC’s Newsnight programme speaking as the leader of the organisation’s youth division.

Henrietta Paget, for the prosecution, said Brentford-supporting hooligans had travelled to the scene after a game against Hartlepool, to meet rival Leyton Orient supporters, who were on their way back from a match at Colchester in Essex.

The court heard Hudson told police that there was “history” between the clubs dating back to the 1980s.

Titus said he went to the scene after hearing some commotion, but denied any knowledge of the brawl being prearranged.

All six were given football banning orders.

BBC News

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