An MI5 agent was stabbed trying to save a friend from a gang who launched a "vicious and cowardly" attack on their group as they left a restaurant, a court heard yesterday.
The security services member and three friends suffered serious injuries. He was stabbed in the chest, one of the group had multiple stab wounds and two were slashed across the face, Blackfriars Crown Court was told.
The friends, and another MI5 agent, were leapt upon as they left Belgo restaurant, in Notting Hill Gate, west London, prosecutor Mark Aldred said.
He said the two men – named only as Mr X and Mr Y – had already left the restaurant when a friend William Fearnley was kicked in the head by a man he passed on the stairs.
Then four of his friends were stabbed, in one case in the back, severing an artery, said Mr Aldred.
The jury heard that when Mr Y returned he recognised the attackers as the same men who had been "abrasive and obnoxious" in the bar earlier.
He ran to the aid of friend, Ryan Jenkin, who was slumped against the wall, being punched and kicked, and pulled him to safety. Mr Y was then stabbed and kicked as he lay on the ground, and later needed 17 stitches in a chest wound.
Mr Jenkin suffered multiple stab wounds to his abdomen, arm and back and a fractured cheekbone. He also had a punctured lung, severed artery in his back and a fractured cheekbone. Mr Dunstan, who was helped by Mr X, along with another friend Alan Phillips, were slashed across the face.
Tarique Shah of Perivale, west London, Mazen Itani of Westminster, central London, both aged 24, and Mohamed Raihani, 26, of Hammersmith, west London, each deny four counts of wounding with intent to cause grievous bodily harm and a charge of violent disorder on 10 March last year.
Itani claimed his group had been attacked themselves. He denied he had been involved in the stabbing.
Shah told police he was in the bar and a friend showed him a knife. Raihani denied ever visiting Belgo.Reuse content