A BASILDON man has been charged after a church was damaged in an attack.

Yussef Alwali, of Basildon, was charged yesterday following an incident at Chadwell Heath Baptist Church in Romford on Sunday afternoon.

Barking and Dagenham Police said in a Twitter message: "We are aware of a video circulating on social media of a male causing damage to a religious premises on High Road, Chadwell Heath.

"A male has been arrested and the matter is being investigated. Any witnesses please call 101 quote cad 4071/18OCT. 323EA."

The video showed a man ripping off a cross from the front of the church

A Met Police spokesperson added: "A man has been charged following an incident at a church in Chadwell Heath.

"Yussef Alwali – 19, from Basildon, Essex, will appear in custody at Barkingside Magistrates’ Court on Tuesday, October 20 charged with religiously aggravated criminal damage.

"This follows an incident in High Road, Chadwell Heath at approximately 2.40pm on Sunday, October 18."

Reverend James Thomas of the church posted about the incident on social media after the video footage was circulated, saying the police responded quickly.

He said: "It was frustrating to have the church vandalised but material things can be fixed with ease."