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Music

Judge shames Liam Gallagher’s son and Ringo Starr’s grandson for “out of order” Tesco fight

Gene Gallagher and Sonny Starkey – the son of Liam Gallagher and grandson of Ringo Starr, respectively – were ticked off by a judge following their alcohol-induced “bad behaviour”. The two had allegedly had a brawl inside a Tesco store. During the trial, all charges were dropped, and both were issued warnings.

Gallagher, Starkey and model Noah Ponte were all accused of assaulting staff at the Hampstead supermarket back in May 2019. Gallagher, 20, was charged with a racially-aggravated assault on shopkeeper Hiran Rajput, with Starkey, 21, charged with two counts of assault by allegedly hitting Rajput and his colleague, Shvium Patel. Meanwhile, Ponte was accused of stealing an alcoholic beverage and attacking Patel after yelling racial abuse at him.

On Wednesday (March 30th), the three young men stood trial for their charges at Wood Green Crown Court. According to the Evening Standard, the prosecutors dropped the case and charges on the first day of the trial. The trio will not be formally punished, and they have been dismissed with only a reprimand from the judge. 

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The judge, Joanna Greenberg, described them as “entitled” and said their behaviour was “completely out of order, no doubt as a result of having been drinking”.

The prosecutors reportedly conceded that the Tesco staff involved in the incident had “over-reacted”. Greenberg proceeded to tell Gallagher, Starkey and Ponte that the conduct of those employees “doesn’t diminish to a great extent the bad behaviour” they had exhibited.

The judge continued: “It is a hard enough for people running late-night stores without entitled young men thinking they could get what they want by misbehaving, and this is what the two of you did.”

The decision to drop the case came following the submission of newly discovered CCTV footage, handed to the court by Starkey’s defence lawyer, which reportedly shows one of the Tesco staff pushing the 21-year-old over. An eyewitness account also alleged that the staff member was seen “hitting and grabbing Mr Starkey and appearing to target him”.

In reaction to the newfound evidence, prosecutor Alexander Agbamu told the court that Gallagher and Starkey “now have a strong case to the effect that Mr Starkey was lawfully defending himself and Mr Gallagher was lawfully defending Mr Starkey.”

Agbamu also noted that a security guard at Tesco said the altercation was “avoidable”. The prosecutor claimed that “the staff should have been more patient with the males”, as “they were clearly young and drunk”.

Ponte’s charge – over the alleged theft of a canned gin and tonic priced at £1.70 – was cleared by a jury yesterday (April 1st) after 30 minutes of debate. Greenberg reportedly insisted that the Crown Prosecution Service should drop the charge altogether, saying that this offence was “trivial”.

The court proceedings were concluded with Greenberg handing Gallagher and Starkey a “bind over, which put an official end to the three-year case on the promise that the pair would stay out of trouble for a period of 12-months.”

The trio had first appeared in court in February 2020 after the charges had been established. Gallagher and Starkey had been described as having “windmilled” down the aisles when a member of staff had spotted them and subsequently attempted to prevent them from leaving the shop. 

Ponte, meanwhile, was accused of racial abuse after telling Patel: “You bloody Indians. Go back to where you came from. You’re not wanted here.”

Last year, the defendants pleaded not guilty to their charges and remained on bail until the Wood Green Crown Court trial on Wednesday.