A 41-year-old man has died after being stabbed inside the popular Manjaros restaurant on Linthorpe Road, Middlesbrough on Christmas Eve.
Mazhar Ali was rushed to James Cook University Hospital after he was stabbed in front of horrified diners as they enjoyed a meal at the restaurant around 3.40pm.
He was pronounced dead a short while later.
Cleveland police said Efreeqi Mohamed Siddig, 20, from Middlesbrough, has been charged with murder and carrying an offensive weapon.
He will appear before Teesside magistrates’ court on Boxing Day.
Manjaros Restaurant had been planning to feed homeless people for Christmas Day but police said the premises will not be reopened for the next few days.
Manjaros serves a fusion of African and Caribbean food and was due to feed homeless people on Christmas Day.
The restaurant is popular among celebrities and has hosted the chef Gordon Ramsay and rapper and singer Tinchy Strider in the past.
A witness told Mail Online: “It’s sad that something like this happened on Christmas Eve. A lot of people were very disappointed and shocked.
“When we were leaving, the staff were all stood in a line blocking us from going anywhere near the kitchen or staff area so we had no choice but to go out the door.”