st George flag
(File image) The pair's sentences were uplifted due to religiously aggravated nature of the offences Getty

Two men have been sentenced for racially aggravated hate crimes after admitting smearing pork on the door of a mosque and draping the building with St George's flag.

Jamie Mullins, 28, of Basford, pleaded guilty to racially aggravated criminal damage after rubbing the meat on the door of the Fiveways Centre in Sherwood, Nottingham, also known as the AlQuba Masjid mosque, in the early hours of 18 June.

Mullins, along with co-defendant Matthew Sarsfield, 31, of Daybrook, also pleaded guilty to causing alarm or distress after draping the flag over some flowers outside the mosque and taking pictures of the scene.

Mullins also urinated outside the building while drinking from a can of beer.

The incident occurred while Ramadan prayers were taking place inside the mosque. Nottingham Magistrates' Court previously heard that both men decided to go to the mosque with "patriotic" fervour after watching a boxing duel featuring an English fighter.

Appearing at the same court, Mullins was given a 12-month community order, with 10 days' rehabilitation activity and 40 hours' unpaid work.

Sarsfield was fined £115, ordered to pay £85 costs and a £30 victim surcharge. Both men received harsher punishments because of the religiously aggravated hate nature of their offending.

Following their sentence, the authorities said they were pleased that the racial elements of the pair's offending was taken into account.

Nottinghamshire Police superintendent Ted Antill said: "We take every report of hate crime in Nottinghamshire seriously and will always investigate.

"I am pleased that the racially aggravated element of this crime has been recognised by the courts. This sends a clear message that behaviour of this nature will not be tolerated in our county.

"No one should have to live in fear due to their gender identity, disability, sexual orientation, race or religion."

Steven Kennell from the Crown Prosecution Service said: "The actions of these two defendants were a clear act of complete disrespect, directed at the community of Muslim worshippers at the mosque.

"The CPS has outlined the serious nature of this offending and demonstrated that it was motivated entirely by hostility towards the religion of their victims.

"Everyone has the right to practice their religion without harassment.

"The court has acknowledged the seriousness of this offending by the increased sentence given to both defendants."