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Police warn vigilantes after child molester’ suspect is beaten up

PUBLISHED: 19:00 09 September 2009 | UPDATED: 14:51 05 October 2010

POLICE have warned against families taking vigilante action on a housing estate in London’s East End after a suspected child molester was beaten up by a concerned dad. The warning comes after an incident in Bethnal Green when a furious father beat up a man he suspected of sexually assaulting an eight-year-old girl

By Victoria Huntley

POLICE have warned against families taking vigilante action on a housing estate in London’s East End after a suspected child molester was beaten up by a concerned dad.

The warning comes after an incident on Bethnal Green’s Parkview estate which saw a furious father chase down and beat a man he suspected of sexually assaulting his daughter’s eight-year-old friend.

Police were called to the estate next to Victoria Park on Sunday afternoon after a man was seen hanging around who the families suspect of indecently touching the eight-year-old three months ago.

Parents say the girl identified the man as her molester and claim he had been seen hanging around the estate where children play several times over the weekend.

The father-of-three who tackled the suspect told the East London Advertiser: “The kids came running along the balcony, leaving their bikes down on the lawn, so I knew something was wrong.

“They said the man was back, so I just chased him.

“The adrenaline was pumping and I wasn’t thinking straight. I was so angry.”

Police were called and attempted to arrest the suspect, but the parents say he ran off into the nearby Cranbrook Estate and had reached Roman Road before officers caught up with him and arrested him.

But police this week are warning against vigilante’ action, which could lead to charges against well-meaning people.

A police spokeswoman said: “We are urging people not to take matters into their own hands as they could land themselves in serious trouble.

“If people suspect anyone of a crime, dial 999 and let the police deal with it.”

A man has been charged with sexual assault on girls under 13 and has been remanded in custody. He is due to appear in court at a later date.


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