A SHOPKEEPER was racially abused when he asked a drunken male to leave his store.

Blackburn magistrates heard Kyle Stuart Turner said he would get his "gypsy mates" to smash up the store and told the owner to call his "Taliban" friends.

But his solicitor, Jonathan Taylor, said his client had gone in to the shop to ask them to stop serving his alcoholic mother with strong cider which was threatening her life.

Turner, 27, of Lime Street, Clitheroe, pleaded guilty to criminal damage to a police van and racially aggravated threatening behaviour towards Muhammed Saad. He was remanded on bail for the preparation of a pre-sentence report.

Janice Vallance, prosecuting, said Turner went into the Lyndhurst Road Convenience Store, Burnley, at about 7pm. The owner's brother was working at the time and he asked Turner to leave. He refused and the owner attended and repeated the request.

"The defendant kept on saying he was a gypsy and would call his boys to come down and smash the shop up," said Ms Vallance.

"When Mr Saad called the police the defendant called him a grass. The whole incident was caught on CCTV which included audio and revealed the racist comments about the Taliban."

Mr Saad told police said he had been in the UK for 10 years and nothing similar had ever happened to him.

As he was being transported to the police station Turner repeatedly spat in the back of the van which required a deep clean.

Mr Taylor said the defendant's mother had problems with alcohol for some time and as a result her health was failing.

"He went to this particular off-licence on more than one occasion and asked them to please stop selling his mother bottles of White Lightning strong cider," said Mr Taylor.

"It is the cheapest alcohol she can get hold of and it is having a detrimental effect on her.

"The sales continued and he accepts that on this occasion he lost his temper."

Mr Taylor said his client believed that as well as running a business the owner had a moral responsibility to try and assist people.

"That was why he got involved in this incident," said Mr Taylor.

"He accepts losing his temper and making reference to the Taliban and knows he should not have done that."