The defence barrister for a boy who stabbed another teen has claimed his client was a victim of 'aggression and bullying' in the run-up to the incident.

Two youths are on trial at Reading Crown Court, charged with attempted murder and wounding with intent over a stabbing which occurred in the early hours of August 9 last year.

The prosecution in the case claims that the teens - who cannot be named for legal reasons - ambushed another youth in Hemdean Road, Caversham, with one boy knifing him while the other acted as lookout.

This followed a row over a fake Louis Vuitton handbag, which the victim stole from one of the defendants a day before the incident.

The youths on trial deny all charges against them.

The boy who carried out the stabbing insists that it was in self-defence - while his friend has said he was not aware of any ambush plot in advance.

Today (June 24), defence barrister Janick Fielding claimed that one of the boys on trial was himself the victim of targeted harassment and death threats prior to the stabbing.

The youth who produced the blade alleges he only did so after the victim pulled a knife on him.

In support of this, Mr Fielding flagged up a number of violent messages found on the victim's phone, dated to the period before the stabbing.

In one of the texts, another boy refers to one of the youths on trial, asking the victim: 'Are you killing him or shanking him?'

Addressing jurors, Mr Fielding narrated the texts in an animated style - prompting a rebuke from Judge Heather Norton.

The judge interrupted the barrister partway through his closing speech, telling him: "Do you think you could drop the voices and not shout so much? Thank you."

The defence suggest that the victim continually harassed the accused knifeman in the run-up to the Caversham incident - including by sharing photos of his body online.

Mr Fielding played down the row over the fake handbag as a motivation.

Of the naked photo leak, he said: "We're far beyond one-versus-one, 'I'm going to slap someone.' This is cruel. This is cold.

"And for what? Over a bag that he [the boy who got stabbed] has, in fact, stolen?"

It is accepted that the other boy on trial was not directly involved in the stabbing.

However, the prosecution assert that he knew about the attack in advance, and tried to conceal evidence from the police afterwards - including by hiding his and the other defendant's phones.

Defence barrister Nadia Chbat - speaking for this boy - rubbished this suggestion in her closing speech today.

She noted that the phones had been hidden in a plant pot two doors down from the youth's home address.

This desperate move, Mrs Chbat argued, was not consistent with a 'plot' to ambush the victim.

She remarked: "How utterly ridiculous and ill-equipped is this young boy on that night?"

The prosecution and defence have finished presenting their evidence in the case.

Jurors will be now be sent out to consider their verdict against the two boys.