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Lawyer accused of ‘punching’ audience member at Royal Opera House in row over seating

The Royal Opera House in Covent Garden. Photo: Alex Rumford The Royal Opera House in Covent Garden. Photo: Alex Rumford
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A lawyer has been accused of punching a fashion designer in a seating row at the Royal Opera House.

Matthew Feargrieve, a solicitor and barrister, is accused of attacking Ulrich Engler, after the designer allegedly insulted his wife and threw her coat on the floor.

According to the Times, Feargrieve denies assault by beating.

The newspaper reported that the incident happened at the Royal Opera House in Covent Garden in October, during a performance of Siegfried, part of Wagner’s Ring Cycle.

The row is reported to have started after Engler climbed forward to sit in an unoccupied seat next to Feargrieve’s wife. Engler then allegedly grabbed a coat belonging to her from the seat and threw it on her lap.

Victoria Murphy, prosecuting, told the court there were two different accounts of what happened.

Sending the case for a summary trial, magistrate Colin Bateman-Jones said: “We have made a petition for a day and a half on the assumptions that it seems like an awful lot of witnesses.”

Feargrieve will face trial on May 9 at City of London Magistrates Court.


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