A TEENAGER who was part of a gang throwing fireworks at cars then tried to square up to an off-duty police officer, a court heard.

Promising student Ali Khan, 18, who attended Nelson and Colne College, had gone off the rails after being involved in an anti-EDL protest in Brierfield last year, Burnley Crown Court was told.

Khan was part of a large group of young Asian men who stormed into one of the town’s pubs seeking out a 40-strong gang of far-right protesters earlier that day.

The teenager, whose family runs a takeaway in Brierfield, was convicted of affray and criminal damage and given a youth rehabilitation order.

Prosecutor Kimberley Obrusik said that on October 18, Khan was in a car with a number of other young men in Brierfield when fireworks were thrown at a number of other vehicles. Off-duty officer PC Nigel Keates was travelling home and some of the fireworks landed in the path of his vehicle.

Khan then got out of the car and started squaring up to PC Keates, inside the car, telling him to open the window. He was then arrested.

He was also caught going the wrong way around the mini-roundabout, between Nelson and Brierfield.

And he was arrested for driving while banned after he was spotted by police behind the wheel of a Mercedes car in Chapel Street, Brierfield, on October 31.

Khan, of William Street, Brierfield, who admitted dangerous driving, driving while disqualified, having no insurance, using threatening behaviour, and breaching a youth rehabilitation order, was sent to a young offenders’ institution for 12 months.

Philip Holden, defending, said Khan was ‘clearly intelligent’ and had a promising college career before he left his studies earlier this year.

He told the court his client had gone on to work long hours in the family takeaway and came from a respectable family background.

But Judge Beverley Lunt said Khan had ignored the chance given to him by the rehabilitation order.

And he had gone on to commit further offences, meaning that a custodial sentence was inevitable.