Two Muslim teachers are facing jail after they admitted beating a 10-year-old boy with a stick for wrongly reciting the Koran.
Mohammed Siddique, 60, and Mohammed Waqar, 23, struck the child across the legs with a plastic white cane at a Birmingham mosque as punishment, Birmingham Crown Court heard.
The father and son pair initially denied slapping the boy during religious lessons for ‘reading the Holy Book wrong’ on four occasions between May 1 and June 13, last year, but changed their pleas today.
They admitted willful assault of the child and ‘causing suffering or injury to his health’ after the boy suffered a black eye and bruises to his legs.
Prosecutor Matthew Brook told the court the two men had been well known pillars of the Islamic community in the predominately Muslim area of the city.
He added: ‘Mr Siddique and his son taught separate lessons. The complainant was being taught by the two defendants and they were men of some standing in the community.
‘The prosecution have two main aims in this case. The first was to get guilty pleas so they would not teach children again and the second was to tell the community such behaviour is unacceptable and criminal. Those aims have been achieved.’
Both men, of Tyseley, Birmingham, were arrested in June last year after the accusation was reported to police.
The case was adjourned for pre-sentence reports and the pair, who appeared in the dock wearing traditional Muslim religious dress and spoke through an interpreter, were granted bail.
His Honour Judge Mark Wall QC said: ‘They used a stick to hit the complainant with on the back of his leg and they also admitted slapping the complainant on one occasion.
‘The conduct of each of you was serious and the judge that will pass the sentence will have all options open to him or her.
‘I am going to adjourn your case until September 7. On that date, you will each be sentenced. I am going to be asking for a pre-sentence report so I know a bit more on your background.’
Sunit Sandhu, defending Siddique, and Charanjit Jutla, representing Waqar, both said the men were of good character.
The maximum sentence for the offence of cruelty to a person under 16 is ten years in prison.