EIGHT more people appeared in court yesterday following a racist attack in south London which left a teenage asylum-seeker in hospital fighting for his life.
Kurdish Iranian Reker Ahmed, 17, was standing at a bus stop in Croydon with two friends, Iraqi Kurd Dilshad Mohammed and Hamo Mustafa, at about 11.50pm on Friday when they were approached by a gang of about 10 people.
When the gang found out that Reker and his friends were asylum-seekers the three were viciously attacked.
Two escaped after suffering minor injuries but Reker was caught, knocked to the ground, beaten and kicked in the head.
A crowd of about 20 looked on, with some joining the assault, only stopping when police sirens were heard.
The youngster suffered severe injuries including a fractured spine, fractured skull and a blood clot on the brain. He is now out of intensive care and recovering but is likely to be left with permanent scars.
A total of 13 people have appeared in court over a two-day period and police say a dozen more are being sought. They believe that more than 30 people may have been involved.
The attack has prompted an outpouring of support for Reker.
Bridey Watson from Bristol launched an appeal on Saturday on the Just Giving website for funds to help him.
Its original target was £3,500 but the fund passed the £25,000 mark yesterday with some donating as much as £500 as members of the public showed their disgust at the attack.
Fundraiser Ms Watson said: “People care and want to make him feel that he’s welcomed and they want to support him
on his journey back to regaining his health.
“Every small act of kindness that someone can give is truly life-changing.”
Philip Brassington, who left a donation of £100 on Monday,
said: “I hope we can all go some way to reassuring this young man that the majority of us from the UK welcome and support all people in need.”