A GANG violently smashed up a karaoke booth at a Chinese restaurant after a failed blackmail plot.
In this instance, when the offenders were rebuffed they responded with petulant violence and trashed the karaoke room
The offenders destroyed the booth at the Han Dynasty restaurant on Whitworth Street on 19 May 2013 after their demands for protection money were rebuffed by staff.
Up to six Chinese men went into the restaurant and used the karaoke room for several hours.
However, at about 1.30am on 20 May 2013 they demanded protection money from the manager. When this was refused, they turned violent and caused up to £1,000 worth of damage in the booth, smashing the TV screens before leaving.
Police have now released CCTV stills of the offenders and are appealing to anyone with information to come forward.
It is believed the offenders are from the Fujian Provence of China.
Detective Constable Adam Cronshaw said: "Protection rackets are a form of blackmail and put victims at the mercy of criminal gangs who bully them into handing over money under the false pretence of 'protecting' them.
"Nothing could be further from the truth - no such protection is offered, only the threat of violence if victims do not comply.
"In this instance, when the offenders were rebuffed they responded with petulant violence and trashed the karaoke room, leaving the owners of the restaurant seriously out of pocket and not to mention fearful they themselves may be targeted.
"These sorts of protection rackets will not be tolerated by Greater Manchester Police and if we identify anyone involved in this sort of cowardly criminality we will take robust action.
"I would therefore ask people to look carefully at the CCTV stills we have issued and if you think you recognise the offenders please come forward. We need the names and addresses of these people so we can send out a powerful message that we will bring to justice anyone involved in these protection rackets."
Anyone with information should call police on 101 or the independent charity Crimestoppers, anonymously, on 0800 555 111.