London acid attacks: Second teenager arrested after five linked incidents across capital's north and east

15-year-old boy detained on suspicion of robbery and causing grievous bodily harm, after five men were doused with acid during 90-minute rampage

May Bulman
Friday 14 July 2017 15:57 BST
The police said one victim had been left with ‘life-changing’ injuries after being doused on Thursday night
The police said one victim had been left with ‘life-changing’ injuries after being doused on Thursday night (@moodiman)

Police have arrested a second teenager in connection with a string of acid attacks that took place in north and east London.

A 15-year-old boy was detained at an address in Stoke Newington on suspicion of robbery and causing grievous bodily harm, after a 90-minute rampage saw five men doused with a noxious substance on Thursday night.

Another boy, aged 16, had already been held on suspicion of the same offences in the early hours of this morning, after he was identified near the scene of the offences by council CCTV operators.

Both teenagers are in custody at a north London police station.

The victims, all of whom were riding mopeds at the time of the attacks, required hospital treatment and one has been left with “life-changing” injuries, according to police.

Jabed Duzzahuru, a Deliveroo driver, was among them and is said to have been permanently scarred by the attack on his way home from work, according to the food delivery firm.

The 32-year-old, who is president of a group which represents more than 2,500 delivery drivers from companies, including Deliveroo and UberEats, was making a food delivery order to a customer when the attackers struck.

Residents living in close vicinity to the incidents, which took place in Hackney, Shoreditch, Stoke Newington and Islington, said they were alarmed by the attacks and called for action to be taken to prevent them in future.

Chief Inspector Ben Clark, from Hackney Borough, said the attacks mark a rise in assaults involving corrosive incidents in London, and urged members of the public to challenge anyone who may be seeking to replicate them.

“These are hideous offences and must have been very frightening for all of the victims.

“Of late we have seen more attacks using corrosive substances in London. I would urge businesses and parents to challenge those who they think may be trying to obtain or carry these substances as this could help prevent serious offences and life changing injuries being caused.”

Inspector Clark added: “I’m aware of rumours circulating that the victims were all food delivery riders set up in advance of the attacks. This is not the case. All victims were riding mopeds at the time of the attacks, but were from a variety of backgrounds.

The spate of acid attacks comes just weeks after a man threw acid in the faces of an aspiring model and her cousin through the windows of a car in Newham, east London, in an attack that is being classed as a hate crime.

Resham Khan, 21, and Jameel Muhktar, 37, were left with life-changing neck and face injuries when acid was thrown at them as they waited at traffic lights in east London on Ms Khan’s birthday last month.

Following the incidents of Thursday night, Labour MP for East Ham Stephen Timms has called for carrying acid to be made a crime, and urged that stop-and-search procedures should be reviewed in light of the attacks.

Theresa May, meanwhile, hinted at the introduction of new legislation to combat a rise in acid attacks following rampage in London, saying the Government was working with police to see what more can be done to prevent such “horrific” attacks from happening.

Thursday night acid attacks as they happened:

10:25pm: A 32-year-old man on a moped in Hackney Road is left with facial injuries, after a moped with two male riders pulls up alongside and attacks him. They also steal his moped.

10:49pm: A 44-year-old man has a corrosive substance thrown in his face by two men on a moped in Islington.

11:05pm: A corrosive substance is reported to have been thrown in the face of a 52-year-old man by two men on a moped in Shoreditch High Street. The victim is taken to hospital.

11:18pm: Police receive reports of a robbery in Cazenove Road, Stoke Newington, where a corrosive substance is thrown. A 24-year-old man suffers facial injuries described as “life changing”.

11:37pm: A 33-year-old man on a moped in traffic in Chatsworth Road, Clapton, has liquid sprayed in his face and his vehicle stolen.

Anyone with further information about these incidents should contact police on 101, via Twitter @MetCC. To give information anonymously call Crimestoppers on 0800 555 111 or visit crimestoppers-uk.org.

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