Newborough man jailed for attack in debt row

North Wales Police

A Newbrough man has been jailed for attacking a man in a row over a debt of £3.24.

James Reilly pleaded guilty to a sustained assault on Malcolm Jones (44) in the village in April. The defence claimed he had acted in ”excessive self defence” against the victim.

The 25 year-old also admitted possessing a Stanley knife, which he handed over to a doorman in Caernarfon in January. He was sentenced to five and a half years in prison for the two crimes.

Caernarfon Crown Court heard Reilly asked Mr Jones to borrow a fiver. He was given £3.24 but refused to repay when the two met again later.

The prosecution said Mr Jones picked up a wooden chair leg, but it was taken from his hands by another man and he was knocked to the ground.

CCTV footage showed Reilly punching and kicking his victim in the head and stomach, leaving him unconscious and suffering hip and arm fractures.

A mother with two children saw the attack and alerted police. Soon afterwards, Reilly, who had a known violent criminal record, was arrested on a bus heading for Bangor.

The defence said Reilly was remorseful about the assault and accepted he was under the influence of drugs – a problem he was trying to address.

But Judge Rhys Rowlands rejected their claim that it was a case of ‘excessive self defence’ against Mr Jones and the suggestion that the victim was swinging the chair leg.

He told the court that Reilly had committed a very serious assault – on a man with health issues – while under investigation for possessing the Stanley knife. He added both crimes called for immediate custody.

Reilly must serve six months for the knife offence, running consecutively with the five year sentence for assault. A restraining order was also made against him.

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