Police swooped this morning on addresses in Whitefield and Derbyshire, arresting two 17-year-olds on suspicion of causing grievous bodily harm and violent disorder.
Moshe Fuerst suffered a fractured skull and a brain injury in a violent attack in Manchester on Saturday. He and three friends (two teenagers and a 20-year-old) were wounded when they were assaulted whilst waiting at the Bowker Vale tram stop.
Following this morning’s dawn arrests, Greater Manchester Police issued a call for witnesses to come forward. It is hoped that passersby may have witnessed the verbal abuse on the platform at Bowker Vale or on Middleton Road which is where the boys fled to and where the violent assault took place. Police hope that drivers on the busy road may have seen the incident.
Detective Inspector Liam Boden said: “We have had a team of officers working closely with our partners to recover and examine evidence since the offence took place, which has revealed a sustained and unprovoked attack on the victims who were waiting for a tram on the opposite platform. Detectives investigating this case will be interviewing two suspects later today, but we are still appealing for any witnesses to come forward.
“There are two distinct scenes, as we believe the victims were chased from the platform to Middleton Road and that is where the most serious assault took place.
“We would therefore like to ask anyone who may have been travelling along Middleton Road at around 11.25pm on Saturday, or anyone who believes they may have witnessed the attack, to come forward.
“Similarly, we believe the offenders then alighted the Metrolink towards Bury at around 11.35pm, travelling between Bowker Vale and Radcliffe. We know there were people on this tram and that they would have noticed these offenders travelling between carriages, as it would have been obvious that at least one of them had been involved in an assault.
“I know this crime has caused upset and anxiety in the Jewish community, particularly as this has happened just prior to the start of the Jewish High Holy Days, and I want to offer reassurance that hate crime will not be tolerated and we will do everything we can to stop it.”
Moshe Fuerst’s father Michael said: “Moshe is just your average kid who went out with his friends to enjoy a movie at the cinema. These fellows had no reason or justification for what they did. He also wants to thank everyone one for their positive words and prayers that he should get better. And he also wants to thank the GMP who are working hard to bring the attackers to justice.”
Anyone with information is asked to call police on 101 or Crimestoppers, anonymously, on 0800 555 111.