3 Nov 2009

Caught on CCTV: The moment BBC presenter floors taunting yob with his karate expertise

By Daily Mail Reporter
Last updated at 3:25 PM on 03rd November 2009

This drunken yob got more than he bargained for when he picked a fight with a BBC presenter who used to be an international martial arts champion.

Reporter Paresh Patel had been followed for half an hour through Manchester city centre by two youths, who subjected him to a barrage of abuse as he attempted to set up a live broadcast.

The North West Tonight journalist had been preparing a report in Sackville Gardens, central Manchester, when a group of drunken louts began harassing him and his cameraman Steve Capstick.

Watch the video below

Lightning fast: BBC reporter Paresh Patel (circled right) punches a yob in the face after first being pursued and set upon

Held: Police arrive and arrest the thug who assaulted Patel
But what they didn't realise was that Mr Patel has a black belt in Karate, and when he was finally pushed too far the suited reporter lashed out in kung-fu style.

He floored one of the unsuspecting thugs with a kick to the groin followed by a lightning-quick punch in the face.

The dazed victim can then be seen in CCTV footage scrambling to his feet just as police arrive to arrest the man as Mr Patel, dubbed the 'BBC Bruiser', calmly walks away.

A spokesperson for the Crown Prosecution Service said: 'The accused persistently followed the victim and told him not to call the police and a woman poured a pint over him at one point.

'The other two defendants continued to follow Mr Patel to Princes Street, where the victim was punched in the face and threatened with violence.

'One of them picked up a bit of street furniture and also threatened the victim - he tried to walk away but still he was followed by the suspects.

'Both had been drinking and appeared very drunk. But what they hadn't realised was that the victim was a black belt in karate.'

Pursued: Patel (right) is followed by two yobs as he walks through Manchester city centre

Mouthy: One of the yobs confronts Patel as he tries to mind his own business
Mr Patel can be seen in the footage punching one of them in the face before kneeing him in the groin after being attacked as he planned a live broadcast from the statue of Alan Turing in Sackville Gardens, following Gordon Brown's decision to grant the computer pioneer a posthumous apology.

Sean Brady, prosecuting, told Manchester Magistrates' Court that when Mr Patel phoned his studio, two of the group John Nugent, 22, and David McKenna, 27, thought he was ringing the police and started swearing threatening him.

At the sentencing of the pair, Judge David Hernandez said: 'He defended himself, he delivered a blow. I say good for Mr Patel.

'He had no reason to be subjected to that level of abuse and threat by you.'

The CPS spokesperson added: 'The defendants claimed that Mr Patel has threatened them and told had them not to "mess with him" because he was a "Thai boxer" and that he would "sort them out".

'They insisted they were just having a laugh. And that they only picked up the chair so that he could have a sit down.

'Even when they were shown the CCTV footage they came up with the same explanation.'

On set: BBC Reporter Paresh Patel stands outside 10 Downing Street before a broadcast
Nugent and McKenna, both from Manchester, admitted charges of affray and assaulting Mr Patel on September 11.

McKenna was giving a community order for 18 months with supervision and 14 hours unpaid work at Manchester Crown Court on October 22.

Nugent was also given an 18-month community order with supervision.

Jodie Anderson, 26, the female who threw the drink over Mr Patel, had previously pleaded guilty to assaulting Mr Patel and was given a suspended six-week prison sentence and ordered to pay him £50 compensation.

In a victim impact statement read to the court, Mr Patel said: 'I am shocked and upset by what has happened. I was trying to go about my business in a peaceful way.'

A spokesperson for the BBC said they were not commenting on the matter as it was a case for the courts.


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