A 16-year-old boy has been charged by police investigating five linked acid attacks which took place in less than 90 minutes in London. The teenager is charged with 15 offences including grievous bodily harm and possession of an item to discharge a noxious substance, the Metropolitan Police said.
He has been remanded in custody to appear before Stratford Youth Court tomorrow.
Police said the teenager has been charged with one count of GBH with intent, one count of possession of an item to discharge a noxious substance, three counts of robbery, one count of handling stolen goods, four counts of attempted robbery and five counts of attempted GBH with intent.
Earlier on Saturday, a 15-year-old boy who was arrested at an address in Stoke Newington on Friday morning on suspicion of grievous bodily harm and robbery was released on bail until a date in early August.
Five separate male victims – all on mopeds – were allegedly targeted by two moped-riding attackers.
Food delivery rider Jabed Hussain, 32, who works for UberEATS, was on his way home when he had his moped stolen and his face sprayed with liquid at around 10.25pm at traffic lights on Hackney Road.
“I’m too scared to go back to work,” he told the Press Association.
“I’m really scared. I don’t know what to do. My wife, she’s scared. My family’s scared. They were asking me to leave that job, but I love that job.” Little more than 20 minutes after the first attack, at 10.49pm, a 44-year-old moped driver was sprayed with a liquid at the Upper Street junction with Highbury Corner in Islington.
The victim was taken to a hospital in north London. His vehicle was not stolen.
Then at around 11.05pm, police were called after attackers targeted a man in Shoreditch High Street, tossing a substance in his face. His injuries were not life-threatening and his moped was not stolen, police said. Within 15 minutes, a corrosive substance was hurled at a man on Upper Clapton Road, causing “life-changing” facial injuries.
Police were called to the scene at 11.18pm. The final assault was reported to police at 11.37pm, when another man was confronted as he sat on his moped in traffic in Chatsworth Road. Liquid was sprayed in his face and his moped was stolen by the attackers, who then fled.