A student walking to college was punched and spat at before being robbed by a gang of teenagers in a racist attack.

The 19-year-old Japanese victim was walking along Elder Place, Brighton, yesterday when three girls and one boy began to taunt her with racist comments.

Police said she ignored the gang and walked past, only to have one of the girls grab her pony-tail and punch her in the face.

Another of the girls pulled her hair while the boy spat in her face.

They took off her rucksack and emptied its contents on to the pavement.

The student was pushed to the ground where they continued to punch her before running off towards London Road.

The victim was left with a black eye, bruising to her jaw and a pain in her ear. She was also very upset and frightened.

The offenders were all 17 to 18. The girls were about 5ft 7in tall. One had dark hair tied back, was of medium build and wore cropped jeans, a tight plain T-shirt and was carrying a small bag.

Another girl was fat with curly ginger hair and freckles. She wore a three-quarter-length coat with a fur collar and cuffs.

The third girl had a straight blonde bob and a big nose. She was wearing jeans and a hooded zip-up top.

The boy was 6ft and wore a blue cap, navy coat, tracksuit bottoms and dirty trainers.