Muslim who was 'insulted' by hotel owners now wants to wear a burka in court....
I hope she tries it...
The Muslim woman whose complaint about two Christian hoteliers led police to charge them with a religiously aggravated offence is a British-born convert who turned to Islam a year ago.
Ericka Tazi, 60, told police she was offended by alleged remarks made about her faith by Ben and Sharon Vogelenzang during a heated exchange at the breakfast table when she was staying at their hotel.
As The Mail on Sunday revealed last week, the couple are now being prosecuted under public order laws originally aimed at targeting yobbish and abusive behaviour on the streets.
Last night Mrs Tazi, who married Muslim painter and decorator Mohammed three years ago, defended her actions, claiming that the couple had been 'nasty' and had 'all but' called her a terrorist - an allegation they strongly deny.
The charges against the Vogelenzangs relate to a conversation the pair had with Mrs Tazi in March on her final day at their Bounty House Hotel in Liverpool after she came down to breakfast wearing a hijab.
She had been staying at the hotel near Aintree for four weeks while receiving treatment for a neurological disorder at nearby Walton Hospital, but the couple had reportedly not seen her in religious garb before.
The pair are alleged to have said that Mohammed, the founder of Islam, was a warlord and that Muslim dress for women was a form of bondage.
The conversation was heard by several guests at the hotel, which charges £95 a night for a double room.
Mrs Vogelenzang, 54, and her 53-year-old Dutch-born husband, whom sources have described as a 'mild-mannered couple', are members of the Bootle Christian Fellowship and are now receiving backing from the independent lobby group, the Christian Institute.
Mrs Tazi, a former carer and the mother of two sons from a previous marriage, insisted she had done nothing to provoke the incident.
Speaking from her £120,000 terrace house in Warrington, Cheshire, she said: 'I am no fanatic, as people have tried to make me out to be.
'I only took up the Muslim faith a year ago. And it had nothing to do with my husband. Although he was born into the Muslim faith, he is as English as I am. He goes around in jeans and T-shirts and has even got a season ticket for Everton.
'I arrived at the Muslim faith quite independently from him.
'I am a Warrington girl through and through. I loved The Beatles and all the things an ordinary English girl enjoys. I used to go to the Cavern Club. I was brought up a staunch Catholic and only turned to Islam about a year ago.
Bounty House Hotel in Liverpool
'I have embraced the religion and always try to wear the hijab. It gives me peace and satisfies me spiritually.'
Mrs Tazi said when she first went to the Bounty House Hotel she decided not to wear the hijab because she did not want to stand out. But during her treatment for the debilitating illness fibromyalgia she decided to follow her beliefs.
She said: 'It was the last morning, and I decided to wear what I was comfortable in. I went downstairs and was utterly shocked by the reaction of the hotel owners. They became nasty and all but called me a terrorist.'
She added: 'Since it hit the newspapers, I have been too afraid to go out. All sorts of Right-wing groups are commenting on their websites.
'I am really afraid. I just can't understand it. There seems to be so much hatred out there.'
She said she was considering wearing the full burka when she attends court in Liverpool in December.