Manchester police release CCTV images in appeal for help over anti-gay attack

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Police have released CCTV images of two people they want to speak to after a man was beaten unconscious in a homophobic attack.

The assault happened at Piccadilly Gardens in Manchester city centre in the early hours of 1 November.

Jean Claude Manseau, 25, was on a tram when an argument broke out between him and another man.

Mr Manseau and a friend had reportedly been subjected to taunts after the pair sang songs from the musical Wicked on board the tram.

A man followed Mr Manseau as he left the tram at Manchester Piccadilly stop, before a group of between 10 and 20 people attacked the 25-year-old at around 1am.

Mr Manseau was “badly beaten” and required stitches to his faces after the attack.

Following the assault, hundreds of people led by the Manchester Lesbian and Gay Chorus took part in a mass singalong on the trams as a protest.

Detective Constable Tim Greenwood, of Greater Manchester Police, said: “We are treating this as a homophobic assault as the men made homophobic comments to the victim as they attacked him.

“The attack was totally unprovoked and the message is clear – we simply will not tolerate it.

“The victim was badly beaten and had to have stitches to his face, as a result of this vicious attack. He was understandably very distressed by what happened and specially trained officers have supported him.

“We want to speak to the man and woman pictured in the CCTV images who may have vital information that would assist us with the investigation.

“I would urge anyone who witnessed the incident or has any information about what happened to contact police immediately.”

Anyone with information should call police on 0161 856 3229 or independent charity Crimestoppers on 0800 555 111.

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