A 21-year-old man has been sentenced after assaulting and threatening three members of London Underground staff, following a British Transport Police investigation.
Fudhail Kelali, age 21, of Snakes Lane East, Redbridge, was found guilty of two counts of common assault and a public order offence against staff. He was sentenced to 22 weeks imprisonment and ordered to pay a victim service charge of £128 at Westminster Magistrates’ Court on Wednesday 26 May.
The court heard how on 30 September 2019, Kelali told a member of staff at Piccadilly Circus Underground station to open the barriers for his friend. When the staff member explained that they would need a ticket, Kelali forced open the gate and pushed through. He became verbally and physically aggressive towards the member of staff, pushing him, attempting to take his watch and threatening to shoot him in the head.
Kelali then became aggressive towards another member of staff, knocking a radio out of his possession and punching him in the back, causing him to fall through the gate. A third member of staff attempted to get Kelali to leave, but he threatened to shoot her whilst seemingly reaching for something in his clothing. He also attempted to take an iPad she had in her possession but was unable to get hold of it.
Investigating officer PC Steve Russell said: “This was a shocking display of threatening and violent behaviour towards front line staff.
“Kelali’s sentence demonstrates how seriously we take any abuse towards members of railway staff, it will not be tolerated on the network under any circumstances.
“I would urge anyone who experiences or witnesses violent behaviour on the railway to text us on 61016. In an emergency, always call 999.”
Siwan Hayward, TfL’s Director Compliance, Policing Operations and Security, said: “This was a shocking assault, and such violent and aggressive behaviour has no place on our network or in wider society.
“All of our staff have the right to go about their work without fear and intimidation. Kelali has shown nothing but contempt for those that keep the city moving every day, and we hope his sentence acts as a warning to others that if they abuse frontline staff they will face the full force of the law.”