Man, 28, charged with attempted murder after two Muslim worshippers set on fire
A 28-year-old man has been charged with two counts of attempted murder following attacks on elderly Muslim men returning from mosques in London and Birmingham.
West Midlands Police confirmed suspect Mohammed Abbkr, who was initially arrested in connection with the Birmingham attack in which a 70-year-old grandfather was set on fire, will appear at Birmingham Magistrates Court on Thursday.
The 28-year-old was last night also arrested in connection with an incident in Ealing, west London, where an 82-year-old man was set alight.
West Midlands police released a statement on Tuesday saying the force was working with Counter Terrorism Policing teams to figure out of the two attacks were connected.
The Midlands force said in a statement on Thursday: "Mohammed Abbkr, aged 28 from Edgbaston in Birmingham, was remanded to appear at Birmingham Magistrates Court this morning (23 March).
"Abbkr is alleged to have sprayed a substance on two men and set it alight in separate incidents in Ealing and Birmingham on 27 February and 20 March.
"We continue to ask anyone with CCTV, ring doorbell footage or video footage that could help our investigation to send this to us directly [on our website].
"This was a joint investigation between West Midlands Police, Counter Terrorism Policing and the Metropolitan Police."
Residents living close to the site of the second incident in Birmingham Wednesday described the attack as "completely deranged".
Mohammed Rayaz, 70, suffered life-changing injuries after he was doused in fuel and ignited just yards from his home after leaving the Dudley Road mosque in Birmingham.
His son was heard shouting “my Dad’s on fire” as he sought to get help, with an eight-year-old boy among those who came to his aid.
He is said to have suffered life-changing injuries with burns to his hands, face and upper part of the body.
The 82-year-old man attacked outside West London Islamic Centre in Ealing, west London, last month suffered severe burns as a result.
Anyone with information has been asked to get in touch on 101 or alternatively, get in touch via Crimestoppers on 0800 555 111.