Couple sentenced to nine months for racially abusing Sikh taxi driver

Couple sentenced to nine months for racially abusing Sikh taxi driver
Melbourne:  A couple has been sentenced by an Australian court to nine months in jail for a racial attack in which a Sikh taxi driver's turban was ripped off.

Angeline Kim Sollitt, 44, and Michael John Arbouin, 40, were handed down the nine-month prison-term for the "unprovoked" and "malicious" attack on taxi driver Jagroop Singh, 'NTNews' reported.

"The turban is the crowning glory of the Sikhs. For Sikhs, the head and the turban are sacred, they must not be touched or insulted in any way," Judge Stephen Southwood said.

The report said that Sollitt began verbally abusing Mr Singh when he picked her up with four others at the Dinah Beach Yacht Club last October.

"You are in Australia, mate, this is not your country. If you want to live in Australia, take this off," Sollitt had told Mr Singh, referring to his turban.

He kept on driving but later had to pull over when Sollitt got out and yelled "grab his turban, rip it off", before she ran to Mr Singh and pulled it off.

He attempted to radio in for help but was assaulted by the couple.

Arbouin then said, "You see what happens with your turban? Now I'm going to rip your hair off".

The police arrived soon after to take control of the situation.

Commenting on the incident, Mr Singh said, "The turban is a symbol of faith. I only care that these people insulted my religion".
Story First Published: July 17, 2013 12:24 IST

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