A SOLIHULL man has been cleared of a racial hate crime by dumping pigs heads on the doorstep of a community centre.
Carl Stephens, of The Rowleys, Marston Green, was cleared by a jury at Birmingham Crown Court after being charged with causing alarm and distress through religiously aggravated harassment.
The 34-year-old was caught on CCTV leaving the pigs heads outside the Solihull Community Hub, on Hermitage Road, on April 12 where a talk by a global Islamic scholar and spiritual educator had taken place days earlier.
It has been reported that Mr Stephens told the court he had been paid £50 by a man he did not know to dump the heads on the doorstep.
Around the time of the incident, the Community Hub was at the centre of controversy after false rumours circulated claiming it had been turned into an unauthorised masjid (mosque).
The allegations caught the eye of the English Defense League (EDL) and prompted a 3,000-strong online petition calling for the ‘Solihull Community Hub Masjid’ to be shut down.