Police in Ealing have apprehended a 61-year-old man in connection with a series of Islamophobic attacks on mosques and businesses in Acton and West London. The arrest, made on November 27, 2023, is on suspicion of racially aggravated criminal damage involving red paint thrown or sprayed at various locations, including the Palestinian Mission in Hammersmith, a Syrian cafe, and Acton Mosque. The offenses extend beyond Ealing, with additional attacks occurring in Hammersmith and Fulham on 12 separate occasions between October 16, 2023, and November 18, 2023.
Detective Superintendent Figo Forouzan, leading the investigation, emphasized the unacceptability of hate crime in London, acknowledging its profound impact on victims. The investigation team has been diligently working to identify the individual responsible and provide support and reassurance to affected individuals. Faith officers are offering dedicated support to the victims, with neighborhood teams adjusting patrol times and routes to enhance reassurance.
Ealing Council leader Councillor Peter Mason expressed support for the investigation and local mosques, highlighting collaborative efforts with the Metropolitan Police. The council provided assistance in reviewing CCTV footage of recent incidents, showcasing the extensive coverage of Ealing’s CCTV network—one of the largest in the country. Councillor Mason emphasized a commitment to capturing offenders, stating, “Commit a crime and you will be caught.”