Man denies racial abuse of BBC reporter

Sima Kotecha BBC Leicester

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Sima Kotecha

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BBC reporter Sima Kotecha was preparing for a live broadcast in Leicester

A man has denied racially abusing a BBC reporter as she prepared a broadcast.

Sima Kotecha said she and her team faced “racist and abusive behaviour” as they set up for live interviews in Leicester city centre on Sunday.

Appearing at Leicester Magistrates’ Court by videolink, Russell Rawlingson pleaded not guilty to causing racially aggravated alarm or distress.

The 50-year-old, of Glenfield Road in Leicester was bailed to appear at Leicester Crown Court on 15 June.

Ms Kotecha was due to interview people on Sunday evening following the prime minister’s statement about the coronavirus lockdown restrictions.

The segment was cancelled.

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