A CARDIGAN man who carried out an attack that was so vicious that it gave him nightmares has been jailed on Friday (Jan 3) for three years and four months. John James Bell, aged 30, admitted inflicting grievous bodily harm with intent to Richard Owen, a 33 year old carpenter, on August 1 last year. Swansea crown court heard that Mr Owen suffered a broken wrist and had been unable to work since the attack. Kevin Jones, prosecuting, said Mr Owen had been drinking in the Lamb public house in Cardigan. Bell walked in five minutes before he left and said he was trying to find a man called Johnson.
Mr Owen bought a takeaway meal and saw Bell sitting on a bench in Finch Square. He spoke aggressively to Mr Owen and then reached into a van and took hold of a three foot long metal pole. CCTV footage showed Bell hitting Mr Owen with the pole, and continuing the attack while he lay on the ground. Mr Owen needed an operation on his arm and doctors inserted a metal plate into his wrist. Bell, of Brynteg, Ferwig, Cardigan, was arrested a short while after the attack. His barrister, Janet Gedrych, said Bell had been attacked by a group of men in Cardigan several months earlier. He felt so threatened he had left the town but had returned to the area shortly before August 1.
However, he remained so frightened that a doctor had prescribed sedatives. Miss Gedrych said that did not explain the attack on Mr Owen, who had not threatened Bell, except that Bell was in such a state that he could feel threatened even when he was not. He bitterly regretted the assault and had suffered nightmares because of his own behaviour. Miss Gedrych added that although Bell had previous convictions for 55 offences none of them had been for violence. Judge Paul Thomas said the attack had been vicious, prolonged and in a public street. Judge Thomas said he accepted that Bell suffered from an irrational belief that people were out to get him but the attack on Mr Owen had been completely unprovoked. The attack, he added, had changed Mr Owen’s life and it was still not clear when he would be able to return to work.
Police call for vigilance to report illegal raves
DYFED-POWYS POLICE is asking farmers and local landowners to be on the alert over the next few months for warning signs of any illegal gatherings planned for their land over the summer.
Gatherings – such as illegal raves – can cause considerable anxiety to the community and if they are not dealt with swiftly, they are difficult to stop or otherwise control, due often to the sheer numbers of persons involved and the safety aspects surrounding breaking up such an event.
Superintendent Robyn Mason said: “There is little doubt that these type of events are very well planned, organised and that local knowledge is important in drawing down the main group to a particular ‘vulnerable’ field, or area of land which has been targeted previously as a suitable venue.
“Farmers, landowners and local communities are encouraged to report any suspicious activity immediately to the Police; this may be an unusual numbers of vehicles, especially camper vans, vans or trucks in the locality, illegal trespassers who may be doing ‘recce’ of sites in advance of the event.
“I can assure local communities that Police will take the appropriate action to deter illegal gatherings and deal robustly with any criminal offences discovered or disclosed.”
Members of the public are also urged to be vigilant of persons who approach landowners or enquiring for land, in the guise of hiring for apparently acceptable activities such as gymkhanas and scouts/guides events.
Please contact Police on 101 with reports on any suspicious activity.
Wheelchair-bound man jailed for child sex offences
A CHILD sex offender from Ystrad Meurig has been jailed despite being wheelchair-bound.
Dean Harper, aged 61, had distributed child pornography and tried to entice a 10-year-old girl into sexually abusing herself and sending him photographs.
Harper, of Sisial y Pin, Ffair Rhos, admitted downloading 317 indecent images of children in the most serious category A, 400 in category B and 500 in C.
He also admitted sending images in all three categories to a third party, all on a single day in October, 2016.
Harper also admitted attempting to incite the girl into sexual activity knowing that she was only 10-years-old.
Kevin Jones, prosecuting, told Swansea Crown Court that the distribution of the images alerted the police who raided Harper’s home and removed computer equipment.
An examination of his internet activity revealed he had made contact with a girl via social media and swapped messages with her.
The judge, Mr Recorder Peter Griffiths told Harper his offending was serious and a jail sentence was inevitable despite his disability.
Harper was jailed for a total of two years and ordered to register with the police as a sex offender for 10 years.
He was also made the subject of a sexual harm prevention order which will restrict his contact with young people and his internet activity after his release from prison.
Royals set to visit Ceredigion during summer visit
AS PART of their annual summer visit to Wales, The Prince of Wales and The Duchess of Cornwall will be visiting Ceredigion next month.
From July 2-6, Charles and Camilla will tour the country, undertaking over 20 engagements across the country.
On July 3, The Prince of Wales will visit Dà Mhìle Distillery, Llandysul, the first organic distillery in the UK approved by the Soil Association, where he was previously gifted the thousandth bottle to be produced by Dà Mhìle.
The Prince of Wales will also visit St. Gwenog’s Church, Llanwenog, and view their unique carvings created by Joseph Reubens, a Belgian World War One refugee. His Royal Highness will also meet members of their local community.
The Prince of Wales and The Duchess of Cornwall’s fourteenth annual Summer visit to Wales will feature celebrations to mark the 70th Anniversary of The National Health Service and the marking the 150th anniversary of the Heart of Wales railway line amongst other events.
A Clarence House spokesperson said: “The Prince and The Duchess are really looking forward to their annual summer visit to Wales where they will be celebrating key anniversaries for the National Health Service, the Heart of Wales railway line and the 90th anniversary of Gwent Association of Voluntary Organisation. Their Royal Highnesses relish the opportunity to meet members of the community who are making a difference to Welsh life.”
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