Smoke bomb attack on Chinese takeaway

By Lisa CleverdonA FRIGHTENED Chinese businessman told last night how he was the victim of a possible racist attack after a smoke bomb was forced through his letterbox.

By Lisa Cleverdon

A FRIGHTENED Chinese businessman told last night how he was the victim of a possible racist attack after a smoke bomb was forced through his letterbox.

Richard Leung, manager of the Elmswell Chinese Takeaway, believes the attack could well have been carried out because of his nationality and he warned other business owners to be on their guard.

Staff at the School Road takeaway were cleaning up for the night when the smoke bomb was jammed through the front door at about 11.45pm.

“We were closed for the evening, so luckily there were no customers in the shop. We were all in the kitchen when we heard something drop through the letterbox and when we went to look all we could see was smoke,” said Mr Leung.

“My first priority was to get everyone out of the building in case there was a fire. By the time we were outside and ready to call the fire brigade, we realised it was just smoke, so we called the police instead.

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“When we went back inside we found a small object, that looked like a firelighter.”

No-one was hurt during the incident and the takeaway suffered only minor fire damage to the inside wall.

But Mr Leung was worried other businesses in the area could also be targeted and added: “People need to be made aware that this sort of thing happens.

“Everyone has a letterbox and it is impossible to avoid attacks of this kind. I don't know whether this was a racist issue, or a disgruntled customer, or just youngsters messing around, but it felt like an invasion.

“We are just very grateful that no-one was hurt and there was not an actual fire because it could have been a lot worse.”

Suffolk police have appealed for information about the attack, which took place on Saturday.

A police spokesman said: “Five youths were seen running from the area in the direction of Old School Court in Elmswell.

“This must have been a frightening ordeal for the owners of the takeaway. Fortunately, there was no permanent damage caused, but the incident is being treated extremely seriously.”

Anyone with information should contact 01284 774100.

lisa.cleverdon@eadt.co.uk

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