A TEENAGER who attacked another in the grounds of a Bury church - before being involved in a two-on-one robbery in a store - has dodged jail.

Then aged 16 and 17, Zeyn Badat was part of a gang which terrorised people across Greater Manchester through street robberies.

Badat, of Potter Street, Bury, was part of a group of youths who intimated other young people in the grounds of Bury Parish Church on April 23, 2019.

He pushed one in the church’s grounds, asking him “where’s that fancy f***ing watch of yours” before punching and pulling him to the ground.

Two others also took part in the attack.

Prosecutor Kevin Donnelly told Manchester Crown Court the incident left the young victim “extremely shook up and afraid to go back into the town centre.”

Badat was arrested but released under investigation just over a month later.

On November 14, 2019, Badat took part in what Judge Suzanne Goddard called a “horrendous” attack in the middle of the Wilko’s store in the Manchester Arndale.

Badat, along with two others , attacked two men in the store after approaching them.

The altercation began when co-defendant Casey Tighe, 18, of Morecambe Close, Manchester, shouted “Oi” at the two men before asking them where they were from.

After initially being ignored, Badat and Tighe began pestering the two men, with Badat grabbing the hat of one of the victims.

The victim then pushed back, before being pushed and punched to the ground, where his head was then “stamped down on two or three times” by Badat.

Badat then ran away from the scene, with Tighe administering a kick to the head which made the victim “go limp.”

The other victim was also attacked by Ryan Lavelle, 20, of Belgrave Road, Oldham. Two hats worth £110 each and two iPhones worth £700 each were taken from the two men.

Appearing for sentence today, Badat was given a a 24 month community rehabilitation order after pleading guilty to robbery and attempted robbery.

Defending, Daniel Calder told a previous hearing Badat leaving showed that he had “removed himself from the violence” and had not unleashed a sustained attack.

He added that Badat had had a difficult upbringing, witnessing domestic abuse and had only fallen into criminal circles when he had moved house in 2016.

He also said that Badat was looking to get a job and “cut ties” with the negative influences in his life, after having completed several qualifications while on remand.

Tighe, who had confessed to four robberies, an affray and a theft, was jailed for three years and four months.

Lavelle, who pleaded guilty to one robbery and was jailed for three years.

Co-defendant Nathan Jones-Lowe, 19, of Albert Street Manchester, was sentenced to two years and two months in jail for three robberies.

All four were jailed as a result of Operation Valiant, a crackdown on robberies in Manchester city centre and across the region.

Speaking after the case, Supt Chris Hill of GMP's City of Manchester Division said: "I hope today's sentencing goes out as a warning that GMP will absolutely not tolerate this type of behaviour in our communities.

"We will continue to ensure anyone who thinks these kinds of acts of criminality are acceptable will face justice and there will be consequences for their actions. The Valiant team's hard work and dedication has shown significant reduction in the number of robbery victims and we will keep working hard to reduce this even further."

Det Con Leon Cawley-Bowyer, of the Valiant team, added: "This group targeted, intimidated and attacked innocent members of the public in a particularly violent and unprovoked manner.

"No-one should be made to feel unsafe or anxious when walking through the streets of Greater Manchester. The Operation Valiant team would like to thank all those that came forward during this investigation, showing great determination and bravery in what were a series of very impactful crimes."