Teen fined £100 for setting Jewish man's hair on fire

"Are you Jewish? You can't be Jewish because you don't have horns," the boy said during the attack.

The 102 bus at Muswell Hill (photo credit: Wikimedia Commons)
The 102 bus at Muswell Hill
(photo credit: Wikimedia Commons)
A London teenager who set a Jewish man's hair on fire and threatened to beat him up has been sentenced to a four-month youth rehabilitation order, and was told to write the victim a letter of apology and pay him £100 in compensation.
The teen, who cannot be named for legal reasons, was 14 when he boarded the top deck of a bus in Muswell Hill, London with a friend on the evening of March 26, 2018, Highbury Youth Court heard, according to local news outlet Ham & High.
Prosecutor Beata Murphy told the court: "The defendant said: 'Are you a Paki or a Jew?' The defendant then sat behind the complainant and the other male opposite him. The complainant then heard a crackling sound and realized that it was his hair (on fire)."
When the man turned to confront the boy, the boy retorted: "Are you Jewish? You can't be Jewish because you don't have horns. Do Jews keep money under their caps?," the court heard.
Sat on either side of the man, the two teens threatened to beat him up and smash the laptop he was working on.
The youth, aged 16 at the time of his court appearance on January 16, pled guilty to racially and religiously aggravated common assault, but expressed remorse for his actions, telling the court that he had grown and changed as a person, and was now working toward gaining his GCSEs so that he could go to college.
Chair of the bench Adrian Gifford said: "We do feel that setting somebody's hair on fire and the things that you said were very serious indeed. The racial uplift on this will be an additional month from the recommendation in the pre-sentence report of three months, so going up to four months."
Mr Gifford added: "You have made a good start by what you said in court today, and we are remembering the underlying reason behind the youth court, and that is to prevent you reoffending, and also your welfare."
The teen was handed an activity requirement of eight hours, in addition to working with educational staff one-on-one in behavioral sessions to combat racial discrimination.