Newcastle: Cabaret star living in fear after homophobic robbery
A cabaret performer has spoken out about how he lived in fear for months, after being attacked and robbed by a man he met on a night out after work.
Simon Green, 48, told Newcastle Crown Court how he and friend, Matthew Armstrong, had met Iain Banks in a takeaway restaurant in Newcastle upon Tyne, last year, after they had finished their shifts at Boulevard Cabaret.
Mr Green, also known as Betty Legs Diamond, invited him back to his shared house, where Banks asked him to perform a sexual act on him. The pair then went back out into Newcastle city centre, where Banks attacked and robbed Mr Green.
Mr Green told the Sunday Sun: “I’ve not seen homophobia like that since the 70s.” Describing the attack in court, he said:
“It came from behind and cut me across my nose, which split, and I hit the deck. Then there was a barrage of kicks and punches and pushes and verbal abuse,” he told the Sunday Sun.
“I can remember questioning why he was doing it. I said, ‘There’s so much blood, why are you doing this?’”
The court heard how Banks shouted at Mr Green: “You are going to pay for touching me you faggot. I’m taking everything you’ve got,” before emptying his pockets and stealing his bag. The items stolen included a Cartier pen, a Louis Vuitton bag and laptop.
Mr Green was taken to hospital, where he was treated for cuts and bruises, and a fractured nose.
Banks had initially denied robbery and having sex with Mr Green, but changed his plea to guilty when CCTV footage was shown in the court.
Banks was given six years to run alongside a five year sentence he was already serving for robbery. He was told by Recorder, Andrew Kelbrick: “There are significant aggravating features including your previous convictions and especially the fact this was in effect a homophobic offence.”
Mitigator, Carolina Kabral, said: “[Banks] fully and wholeheartedly accepts what he did to Mr Green and expresses his remorse. He is sorry for the trauma and financial loss.”
Banks also shouted “sorry” to Mr Green as he left the dock.