2017-08-23 / Features

Simotas Meets With Egyptian Food Vendor, Hate Crime Target

Assemblymember Aravella Simotas offered help to local food vendor Farid el-Baghdadi, who has been the victim of several anti-muslim and anti-Arab attacks over the course of the past few weeks. Mr. el- Baghdadi is an Egyptian immigrant who has lived in Astoria for 20 years and sells halal food from a truck parked on Steinway Street near 25th Avenue. On three separate occasions, he was pelted with rotten eggs and garbage. The most recent attack was Monday, August 7 and one of the eggs had a note attached that contained a profane anti-muslim and anti-Arab message.

Simotas said, “I am angered by these deplorable acts of hate. Not only do these hate crimes hurt and insult the man who was the direct target, they sow fear in Astoria’s immigrant community. People of all faiths and backgrounds have the right to live and work here, in peace without fear of being attacked. I urge anyone with information about the perpetrator or perpetrators to contact the NYPD’s Hate Crime Task Force: 1-800-888-4283 or at hctf@nypd.org. Or call Crimestoppers at 1-800-577-TIPS. The reward for information is $20,000.”

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