THE aggressive and threatening behaviour of some of the defendants and their families during and after the long-running Bradford grooming trial can now be revealed.

Following the men’s convictions, prosecution barrister Kama Melly QC said she and her junior counsel, Sharon Beattie, had been heckled and verbally abused outside the court building late on Tuesday afternoon.

Miss Melly said several people hanging around after the defendants had been locked up pending sentence had called the lawyers “slags” and said they hoped that they would be raped.


The trial judge, the Recorder of Bradford, Judge Jonathan Durham Hall QC, described this as “absolutely outrageous” and hoped the culprits could be identified and reported to the police with a view to being prosecuted.

“The powers that be must take action. These are members of the independent Bar who have just done their job,” he said.

After the guilty verdicts were returned, some of the men’s relatives shouted angry abuse from the public gallery and were escorted from the courtroom by police and security officers.

A violent disturbance then broke out on the concourse, with several men being ejected from the building and barred from attending the sentencing hearing the following day.

Some of the defendants had to be warned about their conduct during the course of the trial. There were complaints from dock officers and canteen staff about their rude and unpleasant behaviour, prompting Judge Durham Hall to repeatedly warn them their bail would be withdrawn if they did not mend their ways.

When the men were sentenced, they were surrounded by prison security staff, while court security officers and the police were present in the courtroom and on the concourse.

Although several women family members wept in the public gallery as the sentences were passed and each man was led in turn down the steps to the cells, there was no further disturbance.