What are the racially- and religiously motivated attacks?
Racially motivated attacks or religiously motivated attacks refer to attacks that are motivated by someone’s race, religion, lack of religion, or presumed race. This is sometimes called “hate crime”. This could include:
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A physical attack by another person or group on a person, family or loved one
An attack on someone’s property or home, such as breaking windows, throwing objects through a mailbox, or setting a car on fire.
- Verbal abuse or threats
- Written abuse can be in the form of a letter, pamphlet or email.
- A wall or building with an abusive slogan
- Football-related hatred, such as songs or chants that are sectarian in nature.
- Racial and religious offenses
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Racially or religiously aggrieved is an offense if the offender insults the victim’s membership or presumed membership of a racial/religious group or the offence is motivated in hostility to members of that racial/religious group. You will need evidence that the offense was aggravated or motivated by prejudice. This could be, for example, the words of the victim, or any other way you have gathered information about threatening communications.
- Communications threats
- If the material contains:
- Threats of serious harm or
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Threatens made in the name of religious hatred
A person who incites hatred against a particular religion or racial group by publishing or disseminating insulting information can be charged with racial and religious hatred. Information can be printed materials such as leaflets and magazines. Information can also be found on websites, emails, and chat rooms.
What can you do to address a situation of religious or racist hatred?
A court can sentence the attacker to a harsher sentence if you are the victim of a racist or religious attack. These are some examples of crimes that can be racially and religiously motivated:
- Criminal damage
- Assault, actual bodily injury and grievous bodily damage
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It is possible that there have been attacks in the past which could indicate that an attack was racially and religiously aggravated. A local organization, such as a community group, or the Citizens Advice Bureau may be able to confirm that the area has been the victim of similar attacks in the past. A history of attacks in an area could be used to show that the offence was racially and religiously aggravated.