Two Muslim teenagers have admitted drawing burkas on advertisements of scantily-clad women because they offended their religious views.
In one incident, Mohammed Hasnath and Muhammed Tahir, both 18, used black paint to draw the traditional headdress over a model in a poster for Lynx deodorant.
The vandals said it was a ‘sin’ for the woman to remain uncovered and they were ‘just trying to do good’.
They also painted over faces in several other advertisements, including one for the Nicolas Cage film Drive Angry.
Thames Magistrates’ Court in Bow, East London, was told the pair were caught red-handed after members of the public called police.
They had been seen painting over a female angel in the advertisement for Lynx at a bus shelter in February. Paint was also applied to the other side of the hoarding, which carried the poster for Drive Angry.
When police arrived the teenagers gave ‘full and frank admissions’, said Taiwo Akinrowo, prosecuting. He said: ‘They told them that the way the women had been photographed was against their religion and they said it was a sin in Islam for a male to look twice at a woman who is not covered.
‘Both have admitted painting over them. At first, they did not think it was a bad thing to do but they accept that it was not legal because it was not their property.’
The youths admitted six counts of criminal damage.
Hasnath said: ‘If someone was to look at our wife or mother or daughter with a bad intention we would not like it, so we were just trying to do good.’
Hasnath, of Poplar, and Tahir, of Tower Hamlets, were each told to pay costs of £283 and were released on a 12-month conditional discharge.
The case came only days after Islamic extremists started a poster campaign proclaiming areas where Sharia law ‘enforcement zones’ have been set up.
The messages order that there should be ‘no gambling’, ‘no music or concerts’, ‘no porn or prostitution’, ‘no drugs or smoking’ and ‘no alcohol’.
Community leaders in East London denounced those behind the posters as ‘small-minded idiots’.