Police have now arrested six people in connection with the sick bonfire party at which a Grenfell Tower effigy was burned.
This evening the sixth suspect – a 19-year-old man – handed himself into a south London police station following a spate of arrests as others turned themselves in.
It came after another 19-year-old, Bobbi Connell, handed himself in to police with his father Cliff, 49, who hosted the shocking bonfire party at home in South Norwood.
Detectives investigating if the incident was a public order offence or a hate crime have been going through the property’s wheelie bins and photographing its scorched lawn – leaving with bags of evidence.
Bobbi and Cliff are believed be inside Croydon Police Station with Paul Bussetti, 46, who lives in the neighbouring street – but questions remain about whether they broke the law by burning the model building.
Mr Bussetti and his family, whose £500,000 home in West Norwood has a ‘party animals’ plaque in its porch, are scared for their safety after the joke ‘got out of hand’ having had ‘a few too many drinks’.
A close relative sobbed as she told MailOnline: ‘We’re in so much danger now. They didn’t want it to go this far. They are not racist. It’s been blown out of proportion. It was horrible what they’ve done. Let them try and forget it’.
Police have removed evidence from the South Norwood Home that hosted the offensive bonfire party where a Grenfell Tower effigy was burned
Bobbi Connell, 19, pictured and circled in the video, has been named by his grandfather as being in the shocking Grenfell Tower bonfire film
Bobbi is understood to have handed himself in to police along with his father Cliff (pictured together)
Mark Russell, who lives around a two miles away in West Norwood with his wife Debbie (together left), is in the video (right). It is not known if he is in police custody.
Paul Bussetti, pictured, is also believed to have handed himself in and his family told MailOnline they are scared for their safety after the joke ‘got out of hand’
Friend Mark Russell, 49, who lives around two miles away in West Norwood with his wife of 27 years Debbie, was also in the film.
At least ten people including two women were at the party, but it is still unclear which of the men in the crowd have handed themselves in after watching the ‘Grenfell Guy’ burn.
Earlier today five suspects, aged 19, 46, 49, 49 and 55, have all been arrested on suspicion of a public order offence.
Detectives will also consider if they can be put in the dock for hate crimes and if the men could be prosecuted under the Communications Act 2003.
This is when someone breaks the law by sending ‘grossly offensive or indecent, obscene or menacing messages’ online, on social media or via text.
Someone at the party sent it to a wider group on WhatsApp, which led to it being viewed thousands of times on Facebook and Twitter.
The garden belonging to Bobbi’s father Cliff in south London has ashes on its grass this morning (pictured centre) – believed to be from Saturday’s bonfire party
Police officers examine the contents of bins outside the house in South Norwood this afternoon
Grenfell bonfire gang arrested – but have they broken the law?
Police have arrested five people on suspicion of public order offences after they handed themselves in overnight.
The men, aged 19, 46, 49, 49 and 55, have all been arrested on suspicion of a public order offence.
They will be charged if officers can prove they intentionally caused harassment, alarm or distress by burning the Grenfell Tower model
But the suspects may argue that although it is a sick joke they have not broken the law because it was in their own home.
Detectives will also consider if the act of burning a model of Grenfell Tower is a hate crime.
Here are the key questions police and the CPS will consider:
Could the burning of the effigy be a public order offence?
The Public Order Act is used to prosecute people for rioting, violent disorder and affray.
But it also deals with offences that causes victims ‘alarm or distress’.
There are around 1,000 of these cases a year in the UK – usually related to race.
The act protects freedom of speech and the right to say something offensive in your own home.
But if it something shared with the public online or by text this could be an offence – satisfying the ‘public’ element of the Public Order Act.
Can it be an offence if the ‘victims’ are not present?
Yes. It can be an offence to display any writing, sign or other visible representation which is threatening, abusive or insulting – even if it is inside your home.
Police must prove the men created a ‘visible representation which is threatening, abusive or insulting’ – which could be applied to the Grenfell Tower effigy.
Police must also prove this caused a person or a group ‘harassment, alarm or distress’ – and crucially it was intentional.
But the men arrested could be released if they can prove there was ‘no reason to believe that the words or behaviour would be heard or seen by a person outside their home’, according to the act.
However an aggravating factor could be that the video of the effigy burning was shared outside the group via WhatsApp and then published online by a whistleblower, reaching the group it has offended.
Can a public order offence be committed in your own private garden?
Yes. Any offence may be committed in a private place. But again a valid defence is to argue the person arrested had no reason to believe a person or group it could offend would ever see it.
Can it be an offence if it’s not the ‘perpetrator’ that put it on social media?
Yes. Sharing a video on social media can be a public order offence, if the prosecution can prove there was intent to offend someone by posting it publicly, including on WhatsApp if it was shared to a large group of people.
Is it a hate crime?
Possibly. The term ‘hate crime’ is one someone does something motivated by hostility towards a victim or group’s disability, race, religion or sexual orientation.
This includes verbal abuse, intimidation, threats.
The use of a Muslim woman stuck to the side of the tower could be an issue for the arrested men.
But to be successful it usually requires offended person to be present.
Have any other crimes been committed?
Police will consider if the group could be prosecuted under the Communications Act 2003.
This is when someone breaks the law by sending ‘grossly offensive or indecent, obscene or menacing messages’ online, on social media or via text or WhatsApp.
Former chief prosecutor for the north-west, Nazir Afzal said it may be difficult to mount a prosecution under hate crime laws, but the CPS may bring charges under the Malicious Communications Act.
He tweeted: ‘As disgusted as I am by bonfire of an effigy of Grenfell Tower, I recall how a bonfire of a Gypsy Caravan was not prosecuted for incitement.
‘Something that’s grossly offensive is not always an offence.’
He added: ‘There is an offence under the Communications Act which shows that basically by posting something that’s offensive you could face consequences in relation to that.
‘Whilst that isn’t hate crime related specifically it certainly is a crime that can be prosecuted in these circumstances.’
In 2011 Emdadur Choudhury was prosecuted under the Public Order Act for burning poppies on Armistice Day – but the offence happened in the street rather than at home.
Today, police were searching bins outside the home of Bobbi and Cliff.
A black Jaguar X-type with an England flag emblem on its front registration plate and with Queens Park Rangers FC branded hanging accessories was parked on their home’s front porch.
Aerial images of the property appeared to show charred patches of grass along with an England flag lying across the rear of the garden.
A similar flag was visible behind the Grenfell model in the video.
According to his Facebook page, teenager Bobbi, who lives there with his father, attended Harris Academy in South Norwood and now works for Ralph Lauren, having previously been employed by JD Sports.
But a spokesman for Ralph Lauren said he has never been employed by them.
He supports his local Premier League football team Crystal Palace.
Bobbi’s grandfather David Connell told MailOnline: ‘It’s an appalling thing to do given the tragic loss of life. It’s in dreadfully bad taste and utterly shocking and I don’t condone it at all. I don’t know what they were thinking.’
The Guy Fawkes revellers have caused revulsion having laughed as they burned a home-made Grenfell Tower effigy, complete with screaming victims at its windows.
The sick joke has caused a national outrage and sparked condemnation by the Prime Minister and the families of the 72 people who died in the inferno last June.
A woman who answered the door of suspect Paul Bussetti in South Norwood confirmed he had handed himself in to police.
The family member said: ‘Every year we have fireworks. They all make guys of each other. A few too many drinks have happened.
‘We’re in so much danger now. So much danger. They didn’t want it to go this far.’
The relative said the group has intended this year’s to be the effigy being Guy Fawkes.
In tears, she added: ‘It’s not what it was. They are not racist. It’s been blown out of proportion. I admit it’s stupid, so stupid. The comments that were made were just not nice. It’s so bad. He’s going to be devastated. They knew it was wrong, that’s why they came forward.
‘We fear for our safety. There’s nothing to understand. It was horrible what they’ve done. It was horrible. It was stupid. Let them try and forget it. They know what they have done. They are going to be paying now aren’t they.’
Another older woman, who did not want to be named, sobbed: ‘They regret doing it. They are not that sort of people.’
She added: ‘They’re hard working people. It was stupid and distasteful. There was no malice in it. When they’ve had a drink they’ve videoed it and passed it onto friends and it’s escalated’.
Bobbi Connell’s grandfather said he was surprised his grandson had appeared in the footage.
David Connell said Bobbi, who is the son of his daughter Louise, was a ‘nice lad’ who he wouldn’t ‘expect to get involved in something like this.’
He said Bobbi’s father Cliff and his daughter split ‘years ago’ and saw his grandson once a year at Christmas.
The retired property manager, who says his health was broken when he contracted pneumonia through swine flu a few years ago, said: ‘I’ll be getting in touch with my grandson. It’s not on. I hope they haven’t committed a crime by doing this. It’s just in very bad taste.’
He said Bobbi was ‘not a bad lad’ and that he always had a job though he did ‘this and that’.
Neighbours could not see the party but said it lasted throughout the evening and ended at about 9.30pm.
Police officers let themselves into the property with keys and are understood to have taken photos of the ash-covered and scorched lawn
Police officers look at bins outside the house where a model of Grenfell was burnt on a bonfire
The pair are thought to have pulled down their St George’s Flag and laid it in their back garden because of the public outrage to the video.
A 77-year-old neighbour said: ‘They are the only ones on this street with a St George’s Flag. I recognise them. They are clowns as far as concerned.
‘There was about ten or a dozen people – there was a family there with kids and it sort of all ended about 9.30pm’.
The men, who are in custody at a south London police station today, have not been identified but many are calling for them to be named and shamed.
In the video, the group of friends are seen holding the ‘tower’ – complete with paper figures at the windows – over a naked flame until it caught alight – howling with delight as it was engulfed.
Some shout ‘help me, help me’ while queuing for a selfie and one of the men is heard exclaiming: ‘That little ninja’s getting it now’ – an apparent racist comment about a Muslim woman in a burka depicted on its side.
Another replies: ‘That’s what happens when you don’t pay your rent’ and then a person shouts, laughing: ‘We can go rob the bottom flats’.
The scorched remains of what is likely to be the bonfire and the Grenfell Tower effigy they burned on Saturday
Cliff Smith is believed to have hosted the shocking bonfire party at his south London home (pictured)
Mr Bussetti and his family, whose £500,000 home (pictured) has a ‘party animals’ plaque in its porch, are scared for their safety
The arrests followed Theresa May damning the yobs, branding the video ‘despicable’ and their actions ‘unacceptable’.
On Twitter, the PM said: ‘To disrespect those who lost their lives at Grenfell Tower, as well as their families and loved ones, is utterly unacceptable.’
Bobbi Connell’s grandfather David has said he is appalled by the video, which shows his grandson
A mother-of-two and retired primary school headteacher, 58, who has lived on the street for 14 years, said she saw the video this morning.
She said: ‘It was awful really – it’s horrible to think it’s people living really close to you. I know they’ve got the England flag – St George’s flag in the back garden. It’s the only one I’ve seen in the whole street
The headteacher, who wished not to be named, was concerned children would see the video on social media.
She said: ‘I would not want a child to see that and that’s why we have keep educating them at school about what it’s about to live in the world together.
‘They just come across as being really callous, ignorant and in a sense you would want to ostracise people like that. They don’t seem to be part of our community – they seem like outcasts to me behaving like that.
‘It just keeps reminding you we need to instil our children with common decency. It’s just disappointing and every now and again you come across people like this. I never, never noticed anything like that since I’ve been here.’
This is the horrifying moment a group of friends torched an effigy of Grenfell Tower on Bonfire Night which had faces on the side
A fallen England flag lies on the grass of Mr Smith’s garden today and it can clearly be seen in the background
The scorched earth of the garden where the bonfire party is believed to have taken place
These men crowded around the cutout and took photos. Do you know them? Email email@example.com
These men helped move the tower at the start of the film and could face police action if proved to be a hate crime
The Grenfell Tower blaze and the plight of its victims has shocked Britain and the Bonfire Night joke will also shock the nation
A total of 72 people perished as a result of the blaze in the west London block on June 14 2017, prompting an inquiry into how and why the disaster happened.
Is the sickening Grenfell bonfire video a hate crime?
Scotland Yard have said the shocking video of Grenfell Tower being burned as a bonfire guy may not be a crime.
But critics including MPs say the group – when unmasked – should face the full force of the law.
Once the perpetrators are identified police are likely to speak to them.
The law says:
Crimes committed against someone because of their disability, transgender-identity, race, religion or belief, or sexual orientation are hate crimes.
Hate crime all into one of three main types: physical assault, verbal abuse and incitement to hatred.
First: Physical assault of any kind is an offence. If you’ve been a victim of physical assault you should report it. Depending on the level of the violence used, a perpetrator may be charged with common assault, actual bodily harm or grievous bodily harm.
Second: Verbal abuse, threats or name-calling either in public are a crime.
Third: The offence of incitement to hatred occurs when someone acts in a way that is threatening and intended to stir up hatred. That could be in words, pictures, videos, music, and includes information posted on websites.
Metropolitan Police Commander Stuart Cundy, who is leading the investigation into last year’s inferno, said he was ‘frankly appalled by the callous nature’ of the video.
He added: ‘So many people lost so many loved ones, and many more have been deeply affected. To mock that disaster in such a crude way is vile.
‘I can’t imagine the distress this video will undoubtedly cause to bereaved families and survivors.’
He said the Met’s Grenfell Tower investigation team is ‘taking this matter very seriously’ and that any offences committed ‘will be fully investigated’.
A Scotland Yard spokesman said it was ‘too early’ to state what type of offences could have been committed.
Khadijah Mamudu, whose mother and younger brother escaped the fire, said she was stunned by the footage.
‘I really don’t know what to say, for once I’m honestly lost for words,’ she said. ‘The community is stronger together and even this vile act by flag-waving, intellectually challenged, brainwashed sheep won’t derail the fight for justice, nor will it knock us off our stride as we walk forward, in dignity, in unity, in solidarity.’
London’s most senior firefighter has joined victims and their families in condemning the ‘appalling and disturbing video’.
London Fire Commissioner Dany Cotton, who told the inquiry she is receiving therapy after suffering significant memory gaps after being at the scene of the harrowing blaze, said: ‘This is an appalling and disturbing video.
‘To intentionally use and mock the Grenfell Tower fire in this way will cause deep pain and offence to the bereaved, survivors, the local community and all of the emergency services who will never forget that night. It cannot be justified on any level.’
The shameful home video begins with laughter as the effigy is taken into the back garden with people queuing to take pictures of it.
Raucous laughter can be heard off-camera, with several bystanders speaking with southern English accents.
One can be heard saying: ‘Didn’t it start from the tenth floor, though?’, while others mockingly add: ‘Help me! Help me!’ and ‘Jump out the window!’ Another says: ‘Here we go’ as the fire takes hold.
At the end of the clip, someone else can be heard saying: ‘That’s what happens when they don’t pay their rent.’
One witness is heard to refer to the model as being in ‘really bad taste’, something sarcastically agreed by another person off-camera, who appears to count seven others stood around watching.
The video ends as the model is completely consumed by the fire, with one bystander saying: ‘Perfect.’
They then moved it on to a specially constructed plinth on top of a roaring bonfire
This yob got close to take a photo of it in distressing scenes sickeningly lampooning Britain’s worst residential fire
The shocking video shows the collapse of the tower and will horrify many people, especially those touched by the tragedy in west London
Campaigners described the video as a ‘sickening act of hate’.
Natasha Elcock, from Grenfell United, said: ‘It’s a disgusting video. We hope that the police are taking this seriously’.
Justice4Grenfell said the video ’caused great alarm and distress’, and called on police to investigate.
A spokesman added: ‘This was an unnecessary sickening act of hate against those who, through no fault of their own, have experienced the worst since 14 June 2017.
‘This is clearly a hate crime and as a society we should never tolerate these types of blatant acts of hatred.’
Police have been urged to investigate it as a hate crime
London mayor Sadiq Khan said: ‘I utterly condemn this sickening video. The horrific Grenfell Tower fire was one of the most devastating tragedies our city has ever suffered – and I urge social media companies to do the right thing and remove this content immediately.’
Labour MP Emma Dent-Coad, whose Kensington constituency contains Grenfell Tower, told MailOnline: ‘To recreate a very recent atrocity where people saw their own families burnt to death is reprehensible and criminal. These people should be subject to the criminal justice system.
‘I cannot imagine why anybody would find that funny. It is absolutely despicable.’
Westminster north MP Karen Buck tweeted: ‘Imagine how utterly lacking in human empathy you would have to be to do this. How incapable of understanding another person’s pain and fear. What a depressing, shameful episode’.
Men can also be heard making fun of the fire service’s infamous advice given to residents of the tower when the fire first broke out to stay in their flats.
A man said: ‘Stay in your flat we are coming to get ya’ while another counsels the flat residents to ‘jump out the window’.
The video was first posted on Twitter by Kay Oldroyd who is furious at what has happened after it was sent to her via WhatsApp.
Sickened Ms Oldroyd has asked the Met Police on Twitter if it can be reported as a hate crime.
She said: ‘I want these beasts prosecuted. Flying the English flag and enjoying a good old laugh at the expense of 100’s of lives who died in the most horrific way.
‘This is the sick mentality of racist, bigoted individuals. As much as I hate to share this video I want them identified.’
Piers Morgan said: ‘My God, what am I watching? This is unbelievable. Who are these disgusting vermin’.
The video has caused revulsion online with MPs and celebrities calling it shameful and disgusting
The Grenfell dead mercilessly mocked by sick bonfire revellers: The 72 people killed on fateful night of tower tragedy
The worst residential fire in Britain since the Second World War killed 72 people and displaced up to 200 families.
Those who died were of 19 different nationalities and included 18 children.
The youngest victim was the unborn baby Logan Gomes, who was stillborn after his mother Andreia Perestrelo and Marcio Gomes escaped the flames.
The Grenfell Tower blaze claimed victims of all ages and of many different nationalities
Six-month-old baby Leena Belkadi was found dead in her mother, Farah Hamdan’s, arms in the stairwell between the 19th and 20th floor of the building.
Active pensioner Sheila Smith, 84, was the oldest victim. She had lived in her flat for 34 years.
The 72nd victim, Maria del Pilar Burton, died in hospital more than six months after the blaze, from complications sustained after the fire.
The inquiry into the fire started with more than a week of heartbreaking tributes by the families of each of the victims.
Many families had prepared photos of those who died, some presentations included videos of the victims’ happiest times and the families’ most precious memories of them.
Ligaya Moore, 78, loved her Grenfell Tower flat on the 21st floor as it made her feel on ‘top of the world’.
She had lived in the UK for 43 years and enjoyed long walks with friends across London.
Her friend Nenita Bunggay said during an emotional tribute that Mrs Moore was her ‘mother, sister, everything’, adding: ‘She was so proud to live in Grenfell.
She would always say every time we walked past: ‘Nenita, that’s my building, 21st floor. It’s a big building and I love it so much, even though I’m alone there, I love seeing it every day.’
Residents of 12 of Grenfell’s 23 floors died in the horrific blaze last summer
Vincent Chiejina, 60, was found dead on the 17th floor of the tower, on which he lived.
In a video, his younger sister Obi told of how the pair had spent their early years in Nigeria before their family moved to the UK.
As a teenager he loved science fiction and ‘watched religiously’ Star Trek, while he excelled at maths in school.
His sister said: ‘I think he was also quite good at looking after people who were quite vulnerable like himself, so would he never reject anybody just because they were less privileged than himself, and he was always good at spotting that, not exploiting it, but wanting to quietly support them with whatever troubles they had but also making them feel good.’
One of the fire’s most high-profile victims, Khadija Saye, 24, died when she was on the cusp of a major career breakthrough.
Her friend David Lammy, MP for Tottenham, was among those on stage during her commemoration, which featured a snippet from the BBC documentary she had been due to appear in, following her as she launched a photography exhibition in Venice.
Her father, Mohammadou Saye, said in a statement read by his solicitor: ‘Khadija said to me one day: ‘Daddy, I’m in love with images’ – it was this passion that Khadija pursued to the end because it gave her great satisfaction and brough her some joy and happiness.
Firefighters from the fire stations of North Kensington, Chelsea, Kensington and Kingston stand during a minute’s silence in memory of the victims of the fire at nearby Grenfell Tower in June this year
Father Abdulaziz, 52, wife Faouzia, 41, and children Yasin, 20, Nur Huda, 16, and Mehdi, eight, who lived on Floor 21 all died.
Abdulaziz, a porter at University College London Hospital for 22 years who was known as ‘Aziz’, was described as a ‘popular colleague known for being kind to his patients’.
Born in Morocco, he moved to the UK as a child and became the heart of the family when his father died.
Mother Faouzia El-Wahabi, was remembered as a wonderful baker who had a talent for sewing.
Yasin was a university student who studied part-time so he could continue his contributions to the community, officiating as a football referee at local games.
Nur Huda was in the middle of her GCSEs when she died and was described as an inspiration to those around her.
‘We all wanted to be like her,’ Mariam El-Wahabi, her younger cousin, said.
The youngest, Mehdi, was described by his head teacher as a ‘true team player’ who loved sports and was particularly talented at karate. He was the ‘baby’ of the family who collected toys and displayed them on his bedroom desk.
‘It is difficult knowing that Mehdi will never be able to play with us ever again,’ his nine-year-old cousin Sara said.