Mother at centre of Croydon tram rant seen by 2.2m within 24 hours on YouTube admits racially abusing passengers
Legal team had argued that she did not want to plead guilty for fear of being branded a racist
Wednesday 05 June 2013
A woman filmed shouting racist abuse and remonstrating with other passengers on a tram in south London has admitted her guilt after denying racial abuse for 18 months.
Emma West, who was filmed swearing and yelling "go back to where you came from" to passengers on a tram travelling between Croydon and Wimbledon, was charged with a racially aggravated section 4 public order offence within days of of clip going viral.
The 34-year-old former dental nurse pleaded guilty to the lesser charge of a racially aggravated section 5 public order offence - using threatening, abusive or insulting words or behaviour, or disorderly behaviour that is likely to cause harassment, alarm or distress when she appeared at Croydon Crown Court on Monday.
Her legal team had argued that she did not want to plead guilty for fear of being branded a racist.
British Transport Police were forwarded the video after it was uploaded to YouTube. They also received several calls from members of the public voicing their disgust.
The footage titled "My Tram Experience", was shot by another passenger on a mobile phone. More than 2.2 million people viewed the clip in the first 24 hours of it being posted online and was reportedly seen by 11 million before video was removed after West was charged.
In the video she is seen with her then four-year-old son on her knee complaining about ‘her Britain’.
‘None of you are f****** English,’ she is heard to say in the footage filmed on a mobile phone. ‘Get back to your own f****** countries.’
The mother-of-two changed her plea to guilty on Monday, after a string of adjournments in which her lawyers claimed her mental health problems meant she was not fit to stand trial.
It can now be revealed that West also pleaded guilty last month to stabbing her partner Ricky Metson, with an ornamental knife, then assaulting a police officer. She will be sentenced on June 24.
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