A solicitor has criticised the decision to prosecute a man for assault – after splashes from a cup of tea he threw at a wall hit his wife’s headscarf.
Father-of-eight Zakariye Hasan admitted the offence on the day of his trial agreeing he had been reckless.
But his solicitor Bob Carr slammed the fact that he had been charged in the first place.
He said the case had incurred “phenomenal cost” as a Somalian interpreter had been required to aid Hasan throughout the proceedings.
Prosecutor Ben Crosland said that police were called to the address on Fartown Green Road by a family member following a domestic incident.
They found Hasan outside, banging against a window with a piece of brick in a bid to get back into the house.
The officers spoke with Hasan’s wife Mulki Hasan and as a result arrested him.
Hasan, 51, was interviewed at the police station with an interpreter present.
Mr Crosland said: “His account was that he’d had argument in the kitchen with the children and got angry as the children were not listening.
“So he threw a cup of tea at the wall, the tea hit the wall and splashed back at his wife, hitting her head.”
Hasan added that he was then locked out and to try and get his family’s attention had picked up a piece of house brick and began to tap the window.
He had denied charges of assault by beating and criminal damage but then changed his pleas to guilty the day he was due to stand trial.
Mr Carr, director of Huddersfield-based firm Carr & Co Solicitors, explained that a small amount of tea had splashed against the wall and made contact with Mrs Hasan’s headscarf.
He told magistrates: “I’ve been practising before this court for 38 years and it was always my understanding that prosecutors looked at cases and whether or not it was in the public interest to proceed with matters.
“I cannot understand how this case has got to court, how it can possibly be in the public interest to deal with a man who during the course of a family argument threw some tea against the wall which splashed back.”
Magistrates were told that Hasan had moved to the UK from Somalia in 2003 and had seven of his children still living at home.
Mr Carr said that Mrs Hasan had not wished the prosecution to proceed while his client had spent some time living and sleeping at his mosque due to his court bail conditions to stay away from his address.
He told magistrates that an interpreter had been required throughout the proceedings, from interpreting statements to helping Hasan understand legal terminology.
Mr Carr said: “The cost of this has been quite phenomenal, with the interpreter having to be called.
“You can not get a more minor incident than this.
“People do lose their temper and we’ve all been in that situation.
“But there’s a difference between grabbing hold of your wife and smacking her in the face and throwing a cup of tea against the wall.”
Mr Crosland defended the decision of the CPS to prosecute the case.
He told magistrates: “When this case started there were witness statements which gave a different picture.
“I have to submit that a domestic incident which takes place in front of children requires in the public interest to be prosecuted. It was a correct decision.”
Magistrates gave Hasan a conditional discharge for 12 months.
He still has to pay £150 prosecution costs and £20 victim surcharge.