A fight breaks out in an Indian restaurant


Staff at an award-winning restaurant were forced to defend themselves with pots, pans and brooms after problems erupted among large numbers of diners, a court said.

The patrons, who were celebrating a 31st birthday, were only served with drinks and poppadoms after accusing Shozna’s waiters in Rochester of being rude and blunt, it was claimed.

The group of 22 had been loud and asked to moderate their language.

The Shozna in Maidstone Road, Rochester

They decided to leave after criticizing owner Jamal Ahmed and complained that they had been treated disrespectfully.

But a “bit of bahji argy” turned into a scuffle as they were whisked away from the Maidstone Road restaurant, a jury said.

CCTV footage showed other diners fleeing their tables to escape violence, during which Mr. Ahmed was punched in the face.

Prosecutor James Ross said it ended when waiters, kitchen staff and a chef armed themselves with kitchen equipment and a broom to force the party out.

David Pettett and his two sons Tom and Jamie were allegedly involved. They all deny the fight.

David Pettett, 56, and Tom Pettett, 26, both of Silverweed Road, Chatham, were among those celebrating the 31st birthday of Jamie Pettett, now 32, of Churchill Avenue, Chatham, in July 2015.

Mr Ross said what started as a verbal argument with finger-pointing and dissatisfied gestures towards staff has turned into a physical struggle.

Jamal Ahmed was injured in the fight
Jamal Ahmed was injured in the fight

“It was a moving melee, a melee of people pushing, shoving and jostling each other,” he said. “It involved more than the three people on the platform, it involved a lot of people.

“But David Pettett and Tom Pettett have deliberately teamed up and joined in the fight. They sank deeper and deeper into the restaurant.

“Jamie Pettett was already gone but reappeared and made his way to the front of the fray and the prosecution said he was offering violence to people there.

“A fully developed and fully developed piece of argy-bargy developed and the three defendants joined for no good reason.”

Mr Ahmed, a curry chef, said his restaurant did not have a bachelorette party or large groups of late night men policy, but he welcomed the group because he was smartly dressed and that it was early evening.

But her feelings quickly changed when the group became rowdy, swearing and imitating an Asian accent.

The trial continues.


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