Two men have been sentenced after starting a fight in the street dressed as Oompa Loompas – “ironically” because they took issue with what their victims were wearing.
Louis Gelinas and Matthew Wright, both aged 20, have pleaded guilty to affray after the incident last Christmas when they picked a fight with two men during a night out on Norwich’s Prince of Wales Road, injuring one 28-year-old.
Despite the fact that they were “not dressed for trouble”, in the factory overalls, orange skin and green hair from the 1971 adaptation of the Roald Dahl novel Charlie and the Chocolate Factory, the pair at first verbally abused the pair, “calling one of the men ‘gay’”.
Prosecuting, Stephen Spence described the fight which was caught on CCTV at 3am on 27 December as starting “somewhat ironically” because of what the victims were wearing.
He said: “The two defendants together with another man were in fancy dress as Oompa Loompas – fictional characters from Loompa Land which end up being preyed upon by Whangdoodles, Hornswogglers and Snozzwangers.
“They are in fact peaceable characters who Willy Wonka employs in his factory to keep them away from trouble.
“Far from keeping out of trouble, these men got into what was initially a verbal altercation, were abusive, calling one of the men ‘gay’, and ended up pushing the men resulting in facial injuries to one of them.”
Appearing at Norwich Crown Court Mr Gelinas, from Rectory Road, Sutton, was ordered to complete 240 hours of unpaid work for the community.
Mr Wright, from Potter Heigham in Norfolk, also admitted an unrelated assault and was sentenced to 10 months in a young offender institute.
In mitigation for university student Mr Gelinas, his lawyer Jonathan Morgan said: “Clearly they were not dressed for trouble.”
“My client's braces were hanging down so it is easy to tell on the CCTV which of the Oompa Loompas he was.
“He did not start the violence and is seen walking away.”
Mr Wright's lawyer described his client as a “hard-working and busy” young man who “had taken drink and believed that one or other of his friends, by way of the unusual way they were dressed, was involved in a confrontation and he involved himself”.
Oompa Loompas famously appear regularly throughout the stories based in Willy Wonka’s factory, singing moralising songs about what people should and should not “Oompa Loompa doompadee do”.