A FATHER of two Jihadis killed in Syria refused to stand up for a magistrate in court because of his religious beliefs.

Abubaker Deghayes was yesterday cleared after a trial of punching a worshipper at Brighton Mosque in Dyke Road in a dispute over parking.

As is custom in every court across the country, the 50-year-old was asked to stand when the three magistrates were leaving the courtroom to retire.

But the former mosque chairman refused to stand up while he was in the witness box at Brighton Magistrates Court, telling magistrates “I don’t stand for anybody else other than god”.

His defence solicitor, Owen Greenhall, told the court: “It is a requirement of his faith not to stand unless for a religious matter.

“I would ask he be allowed to adopt the practice for the duration of proceedings, as he takes that requirement very seriously.”

Chairman of magistrates Ian Wedge quipped back: “I’m not sure about that I think I will take advice on that when I come back.”

Magistrates later accepted the request allowing him to leave the dock before the magistrates retired to avoid any conflict with Deghayes' Muslim religion.

Deghayes was in court for a trial during which he was accused of punching Adel Raiashy at the mosque on June 20 last year during the holy month of Ramadan.

The prosecution told the court worshippers were eating at 3am in the morning when mosque chairman Deghayes started shouting at Mr Raiashy for parking on double yellow lines outside the mosque.

Mr Raiashy then alleged he was punched in the face and mouth causing him to have cuts to his lip, before the fight was broken up.

He told the court: “He lifted his left hand, he clenched it and he hit me in my face. I got four or five hits from him.”

He also alleged Deghayes had racially abused him by saying “you Egyptians are a pile of rubbish”.

But taking the stand Deghayes denied the assault and said he was acting in self-defence after being attacked.

Deghayes told the court he had decided to ask Mr Raiashy to move his car to avoid more complaints from neighbours, but Mr Raiashy refused and pushed him.

He told the court: “He [Raiashy] said ‘Who do you you think you are?’ and came towards me aggressively. He pushed me, I fell to my back right down to the floor.

“I did not expect him to attack me.”

At the end of the hearing magistrate Wedge later insisted Deghayes stand up in the dock while he delivered his verdict - finding him not guilty.

He said: “We accept an altercation took place and cannot be sure who was the aggressor and we accept any force used by him was in self defence.

“We are satisfied the charge has not been proven beyond reasonable doubt and find you not guilty of the charge against you.”

Speaking to The Argus after the hearing Deghayes explained: “In our faith we stand only to glorify God.

“Standing for humans or royalty is not something done unless we are forced.”

Deghayes’s son Abdullah, 18, was killed fighting in Syria in 2016 and his younger brother Jaffar, 17, was killed in October 2014 while trying to overthrow dictator Bashar Al-Assad’s government.

Another son, Amer, is believed to be alive in Syria.