Wednesday, 31 August 2011

Disabled Mum Battered To Floor In 'Bus Baby Buggy Rage' Attack

A disabled bus passenger was battered unconscious to the floor in a sickening 'baby buggy rage' attack because she wouldn't move her three year-old daughter's pushchair, a court heard today.

Nova Whiting-Willet, 36, was travelling on a packed number 85 double-decker with husband Anders, 32, and was in the crowded buggy area, where passengers had also left suitcases.

Wayne McCatty, 34,(pic.bottom) of Stroud Crescent, Putney tried to force a buggy carrying a small child into the tiny space and admits punching the couple as the row escalated.

"I told him I could not move either way," Mrs Whiting-Willet - who has auto-immune disease lupus - told Kingston-upon-Thames Crown Court. "He said aggressively: 'You are going to have to fucking move'.

"He said: 'If you weren't so fucking fat you'd be able to move you fat ugly bitch.'

"I pleaded with him to stop because my daughter was crying and he said: 'What are you going to do? Eat me or something?'

"He was trying to ram his buggy into a place where there was not any room with the suitcases there," she told the jury.

"He kept making threats that he would have his boys waiting for us when we got off the bus.

"He grabbed my right arm very, very tightly. I couldn't get him off me and I remember being punched on the side of the head and being on the floor very quickly.

"He had hold of my head and was banging it against the floor and I felt him stamping on my head, shoulder, stomach and legs and kicking me in the back," added Mrs Whiting-Willet,(pic.r.) who broke down in tears several times while giving evidence.

He said: 'I'm going to fucking kill you white bitch' and remember something very sharp and very painful that took my breath away.

"I think it was several punches to my stomach."

Mrs Whiting-Willet's sunglasses, which protect her from damaging UV exposure to her immune system, were smashed during the row.

"There was glass everywhere because my glasses were punched into my forehead and my hands and face were covered in blood.

"I think I was knocked out, I can't remember. I was face-down on the floor in the foetal position."

Husband Anders(pic.l.) was further down the bus and was also punched in the face by McCatty when he tried to calm the defendant down, the jury were told.

"I had huge bruises on my forehead and all down the side of my face with huge swelling and a cut to my forehead," Mrs Whiting-Willet told the court.

"All down my right side was black from bruising plus my thigh, even my shins and I lost a tooth.

'I was kicked so hard in the stomach I started to bleed even though it was not my period and it continued on and off for three months."

No passengers intervened and they stepped over the prone victim as they exited the bus for another service.

McCatty admitted he was the man captured on the bus's CCTV when giving himself up to police three months later, but claims he struck the couple in self-defence.

He had boarded the Kingston to Roehampton service with his partner, her seven year-old child and younger child in the buggy at 1.45pm that Sunday afternoon.

Mrs Whiting-Willet admitted lashing out, but insisted it was only after the defendant grabbed her. "It was not hard and it was only once."

McCatty told officers he "decked" Mr Whiting-Willet, but this was only after Nova told her husband: "Just hit him."

McCatty has pleaded not guilty to assaulting Mrs Whiting-Willet, causing her actual bodily harm, on September 19, last year and assaulting Anders as the bus travelled up Kingston Hill.

Tuesday, 30 August 2011

Top Judge Sir Mathew Dodges Maximum Ban

A senior Appeal Court Judge was forced to get on his bike today after he lost his licence for 56 days for speeding through a red light - his fourth motoring offence in just eighteen months.

He could have been disqualified for six months, but convinced District Judge Daphne Wickham - the chief stipendiary magistrate for England and Wales - this would cause 'exceptional hardship' to his farming work.

Sir Mathew Thorpe, 73, of Seend, Melksham, Wiltshire admitted failing to comply with a red light in Victoria Embankment on February 3 and was also fined £250, with £250 costs.

City of Westminster Magistrates' Court heard Sir Mathew - a family law expert - had clocked up nine penalty points for speeding in November 2009; July 2010 and April this year.

An additional three penalty points were added for the red light offence making him liable for disqualification.

His Skoda Fabia was snapped by a traffic camera jumping the red light at 39-mph at 6.55am.

"I do rely on the car to get between my two places of work, but more importantly for my farming in Wiltshire," Sir Mathew told the court.

"The farm buildings are the hub of the wheel. Cattle have to be fed by driving around the hub. I work three days a week on the farm."

Sir Mathew told the court he is separated from his wife and has one part-time employee to help him, insisting it was not practical to find more staff

"It would be difficult, I can't say impossible, but in a small community I can't think of anyone qualified or suitable.

"I would want somebody who knew what they were doing on a farm."

Sir Mathew said he needed to drive animal feed a distance of one-and-a-half miles to take care of his cattle.

his lawyer Yvette Kresner said: "It is a very difficult junction. There is a large bike lane and two other lanes.

"It was a split-second decision by Sir Mathew not to cause danger to other road users and go through the lights."

District Judge Wickham - who knows Sir Mathew professionally - announced: "He is entitled to put these circumstances in front of me and six months would be a long time for the defendant to be disqualified if he was able to maintain that aspect of his life."

Monday, 29 August 2011

Dodgy Driver Banned

A web designer, cleared of driving a car while high on drugs, has been banned from the roads for six months after police caught him racing away from traffic lights and cutting up traffic.

Alexander William Daniel, 22, of Teffont Evias, Salisbury, Wiltshire was visiting friends in the capital when stopped by City of London police.

He pleaded guilty at City of London Magistrates’ Court (pictured) to driving his Ford Mondeo, without due care and attention, in London Wall on February 19.

A charge of driving while unfit through drugs, which Daniel denied, was withdrawn by the Crown Prosecution Service.

Prosecutor Miss Alexa Morgan told the court at was 7:25pm on a Saturday night when police began following Daniel due to the erratic manner of his driving.

“At the traffic lights the vehicle took off at speed with wheels spinning and cut in front of other traffic.

“It did the same again at the next set of traffic lights, with the defendant speeding away and braking.”

Daniel, who has eight penalty points on his driving licence, has motoring convictions for speeding and driving without due care.

He told the court he was running late for a meeting with a friend and any disqualification would hit his fledgling business hard as he lives in the countryside with his mother - a fifteen minute drive from the nearest train station without a regular bus route.

“Your life may become more inconvenient, but you will not suffer exceptional hardship,” bench chairwoman Jennifer Chapman told Daniel.

“Our first concern is public safety.”

The magistrates fined Daniel £100, with £115 costs, endorsed his licence with six penalty points and disqualified him from driving for six months.

Sunday, 28 August 2011

Wine Boss's Cocaine Shame

The sales director of a wine merchants, caught for the second time this year with cocaine as he entertained clients, has dodged prison with a suspended sentence.

Robert Scott Phillips, 40, of Osborne Road, Hornchurch, Essex pleaded guilty to possessing five wraps of the party drug when his black Jaguar car was stopped by City of London police on August 16.

Prosecutor Ms Safira Afzal told City of London Magistrates Court (pictured) officers pulled over Phillips, who had two passengers with him, and immediately admitted he had the cocaine in his pocket.

The married father-of-two is currently receiving drug counselling after a similar conviction in January and the probation service urged the court not to activate a suspended sentence hanging over him.

The court was told Phillips was out entertaining clients as his Polish wife and children, aged five and eight years-old, were visiting her home country.

“You have a young family, have a leadership position in a business and the probation service have told us you are responding to the previous orders and that is what is stopping you going to prison today,” bench chairman Doug Rice told the defendant.

“It was a knife-edge decision and you were very close to going down.

“Courts do not place suspended sentences on defendants to find six months later they have stuck two fingers up at them.

“Maybe you have caught us on a good day. You are a lucky man.”

Phillips was sentenced to four weeks imprisonment, suspended for six months, ordered to pay £85 costs and placed on a six-month supervision order with a drug rehabilitation requirement.

Saturday, 27 August 2011

Cleaning Boss's Pilfering Spree Wrecks Firm

The boss of a successful cleaning company contracted to maintain leading barrister’s chambers in the heart of London’s legal district was caught on camera helping herself to lawyers’ belongings.

The secret camera was installed at 1 King’s Bench Walk, Temple – the chambers of Richard Anelay QC – following a spate of petty thefts.

Claire Karmy, 34, of Windsor Court, Park View Close, St. Albans, Hertfordshire – a director of cleaning company ‘Dusbusters’ – claims a mental breakdown triggered the spree.

She pleaded guilty at City of London Magistrates’ Court to stealing a ladies bra; two L’Oreal toiletry products; a white shirt; four pairs of earrings; a Remington Volumizer brush and four Calmin toiletries on various dates between November 9, last year and April 15.

Prosecutor Ms Safira Afzal told the court concerned management at the chambers (chambers) installed a camera, which caught Karmy rifling through the pigeon holes of various barristers.

On one occasion she was nearly caught when a lawyer walked in as she searched through personal property, but simply carried on when he left the office.

Her lawyer told the court: “She was under extreme stress and suffering deep depression, which she found very powerful and embarrassing.

“She was angry with the whole world and wanted to strike back. This was a cry for help.”

Karmy was supported in court by her boyfriend Gavin Lodge, the co-director of ‘Dustbusters’.

“The reputation of the business is in tatters and it is extremely unlikely to be resumed,” added the lawyer.

“They ran the business together and were turning over forty-eight thousand pounds a year. That has gone.”

After reading probation and psychiatric reports the magistrates agreed to impose a six-month supervision order on Karmy.

Friday, 26 August 2011

Bike Swipe Thief Tracked down

A successful businessman at Smithfield Market has been fined for stealing a £7,000 super bike and stripping it down at his Essex home.

Adam Murphy, 27, of Boyles Court Cottage, Dark Lane, Great Warley, Brentwood was caught when the motorcycle’s tracker device led police to his garage.

He pleaded guilty at City of London Magistrates’ Court to stealing the 600cc Yamaha R6 from a car park near the market on June 30.

Prosecutor Ms Safira Afzal told the court the motorcycle’s owner Paul Ward locked and secured the Yamaha at 7am in West Smithfield, but was alerted three hours later by the tracker that it was moving.

He rushed to the car park, but the motorcycle had gone.

At 4.30pm the same day Essex Police traced the Yamaha to Murphy’s home and he was arrested.

“It had been stripped bare and concealed under a cloth,” said Ms Afzal.

The court heard Murphy, who has shares in two businesses at the world-famous meat market, admit he was: “Incredibly stupid on that day and is embarrassed by his arrest and prosecution.”

He puts in eight-hour shifts five days a week starting at 1.30am and has worked very hard at building up his businesses and bought his own home.

Murphy confessed that he saw the opportunity to take the bike, despite having the money to buy one of his own.

“It is a crazy thing that you have done,” bench chairman Doug Rice told the defendant. “The bike was locked-up and the owner is wondering where it is an when found it is smashed up.”

Murphy was fined £2,000, ordered to pay £3,000 compensation to Mr. Ward and £100 costs.

“We do not want to see you back in court,” added the magistrate. “You have got successful businesses, it was a stupid thing to do.”

Thursday, 25 August 2011

Rolex Watch Raiders Caged

Two smash-and-grab robbers’ sledgehammer raid on Southend-on-Sea jewellery store, which was foiled by a have-a-go-hero plus reinforced glass, have been locked up.

The North London duo pulled up outside Ernest Jones, Southend High Street on a scooter at 9.20am, targeting the 35 expensive Rolex watches – worth £2,000 to £18,000 - in the main display.

However, two panes of reinforced glass withstood their sledgehammer’s blows and they fled when confronted by a local drinking a cup of coffee outside a nearby cafĂ©.

George Allpress, 21, of Frederick Street, Gray’s Inn, Camden and an Islington 17 year-old, who cannot be identified, pleaded guilty to attempting to rob the store on March 9 and the aggravated taking of a scooter, removed from outside a King’s Cross shop the day before.

“There are five aggravating features here,” announced Blackfriars Crown Court Judge Ian Karsten QC.

“This was pre-planned, there was more than one person involved, they were high-value items, the amount of force used and the use of disguises.

“This was quite a powerful instrument, this sledgehammer.”

Allpress was sentenced to a total of two years and eight months and the juvenile received two years for the raid, but received an additional two years on separate drug charges.

“While on bail look what happens. He commits this very serious attempted robbery,” added the judge, regarding the youth.

Prosecutor Mr. Hugh Griffiths previously told the court four staff – two men and two women – were in the jewellery store when the raiders appeared outside.

“One of the women saw the scooter drive up with two men and she knew what was going to happen because there have been two previous robberies at the shop (pictured).

“The passenger, wearing a blue boiler suit and a white crash helmet, was later identified as the juvenile and he entered the shop with a sledgehammer and hit the internal window four times.

“The women were extremely frightened and retreated to the back of the shop,” added Mr. Griffiths.

“Although shattered the window was not broken so the defendant went outside and tried to smash the front window.

“Although the front window was severely damaged it held.

“A man sitting outside Costa Coffee shouted: ‘what the fuck do you think you’re doing. Stop.’

“He went towards the defendant who panicked, threw the sledgehammer down, jumped on the back of the scooter and was driven away by the driver.

“The witness chased after the scooter, but there was no chance of catching it.”

The duo dumped the scooter a mile away in Park Terrace and were watched by a local resident throwing their crash helmets and boiler suits over a garden fence.

The witness later picked Allpress out on an ID parade and his fingerprint was also found on his crash helmet.

The juvenile’s DNA was linked to his crash helmet.

They fled in a people carrier driven by a third man, but witnesses had raised the alarm and police followed the vehicle along the A127 and arrested the defendants in Basildon.

One female member of staff later told police: “This incident has left me frightened and shocked and has come so close after the last one in January.”

“This is an attempt to steal high-value goods and there must have been another party involved who would have received the watches if they were successful,” said Allpress’s lawyer Mr. Nicholas Goss.

“Mr. Allpress seems to fit into the particular role of being able to ride a scooter and nothing more and he will today go to Wormwood Scrubs for the first time.

“This job was offered to him down in Southend at a time when his mother had suffered a nervous breakdown and he was looking after his younger brother and he thought it was a way to get some easy money,” added the lawyer.

“This was a bad decision by an ill-educated man and is something that he deeply regrets.”

The youth’s lawyer Mr. Matthew Hardyman said his client was expelled from school and left the family home at the age of fourteen and fell into a bad crowd, but now enjoyed greater support from his family.

The defendant received an additional two years custody after pleading guilty to two counts of possession, with intent to supply, class A drugs.

He was arrested with a gang of young men when police were called to the Travelodge Hotel, Old Street, Islington where they were separating drugs into small wraps for sale.

Wednesday, 24 August 2011

Bogus Gas Leak Fraudster Jailed For Identity Scam

A mail fraudster’s £9,600 bank swindle was exposed by a vigilant Port Talbot postman – commended by a Crown Court judge - when jailing the identity thief for six months.

Italian conman Cosimo Melis, 35, of Havelock Road, Bruce Grove, Tottenham, was the front man for a mail diversion scam aimed at seizing personal banking details and fleecing victims via London branches.

Post Office sorting offices in Port Talbot and Windsor Road, Neath, Wales (pictured) were told by a bogus female caller with a foreign accent that a dangerous gas leak at the addresses meant mail could not be delivered as normal.

Jobless barman Melis then turned up with a bogus driving licence and successfully collected an unsuspecting victim’s mail, but was caught during a second bid when suspicious staff tipped-off police.

“Neath Post Office workers expecting a broad Welsh accent are met by Melis with a broad Italian accent,” said Judge Peter Clarke QC at London’s Blackfriars Crown Court.

Melis pleaded guilty to three charges of dishonestly making false representations to make a gain at banks in Marylebone; Oxford Street and Baker Street on April 11.

He also admitted possessing a false identity document, with intent to use it to establish personal information, and using the document in connection with fraud at the Neath Office on April 13.

Prosecutor Mrs Jag Shah told the court Port Talbot received a phone call on April 7, purportedly from the wife of local man Gareth Hokin, claiming the family would personally collect their mail.

“She said that due to a carbon monoxide leak at the home they would make the collection at the sorting office.”

Meanwhile Barclays Bank received a request for a new debit card and pin number from a fraudster posing as Mr. Hokin and these were mailed out.

“The defendant or someone else purporting to be Mr Hokin’s son attended with a driving licence and the staff took it as genuine and handed out the mail,” explained Mrs Shah.

Those cards were used to successfully withdraw £4,800 cash on two occasions in London’s West End. A similar attempt in the same amount failed.

When the Hokin’s regular postman – Ian Shepherd - heard about the supposed gas leak he immediately became suspicious and tipped-off the victim who quickly found the debits to his account.

“I’d like him to be commended. It obviously came to his attention because he is the regular postman,” said Judge Clarke. “It shows exemplary attention to his customers that he should speak to them personally.”

Two days later Melis was back in Wales trying the collect post in Neath after a foreign woman claiming to be the wife of Leighton Thomas from Neath Valley called up the sorting office.

“She said there was a problem with carbon monoxide in the area and that the family’s post would be collected,” explained Mrs Shah.

Melis turned up with a driving licence in Mr. Thomas’s name, but with his own photograph, but was refused mail by staff and the police called.

“Mr. Thomas later told police he did not know anything about a gas leak or a change to his mail arrangements,” added the prosecutor.

“It’s obviously a less cosmopolitan population in Port Talbot than in Marylebone,” commented Judge Clarke, referring to the postman’s swift action in spotting something was odd.

“Maybe people just care about each other more in Port Talbot,” said Melis’ lawyer Mr. Sean Smith.

“He did not have funds and fell prey to temptation,” added the lawyer, claiming his client lived in a squat and was on 10% commission from the scam’s organisers.

“You were working for sophisticated people and were defrauding banks effectively and causing considerable distress to people in Wales who lost that money,” Judge Clarke told Melis, who spent a week in Swansea Prison after being remanded in custody by Neath Magistrates’ Court on August 4.

No order was made regarding compensation or confiscation.

Tuesday, 23 August 2011

Xmas Night Killing: No Room Inn Here

A confused stranger had his throat slashed on a freezing cold Christmas night and was left in a pool of blood on his drunken attacker's doorstep, a court heard today.

Inderjit Singh, 36,(pictured) was lost and searching for a concerned friend's flat when he knocked on the wrong door in the early hours of Christmas Day, last year.

"Inderjit Singh was murdered in very brutal circumstances. He had his throat slit," prosecutor Miss Rosa Dean told the Croydon Crown Court jury.

Sheet metal worker David Folley, 34, of 28 Calshot Walk, Bedford has pleaded not guilty to murdering Mr. Singh on December 25, last year and attempting to murder Norman Grant on May 29 while on remand at Wood Hill Prison, Milton Keynes.

The court heard Mr. Singh - known as 'Raj' - had been given the address of 82 Calshot Walk by a friend concerned about him being alone on Christmas night.

"Neighbours of Mr. Folley heard a man knocking and clearly frustrated that he could not get in," explained Miss Dean.

After sleeping on the defendant's doorstep to shelter from heavy snowfall Mr. Singh attended a local carol service at a Methodist church then returned to the flat.

"This time his mistake proved fatal," said the prosecutor.

"In that time after Mr. Folley had come back from the pub and found a drunk and disorientated Mr. Singh outside his flat he went inside, got a kitchen knife, went outside and killed Mr. Singh.

"He cleaned the knife and put it in a Tesco's carrier bag and put it in the bin area."

Folley told police he found Mr. Singh lying in a pool of blood when he arrived home and had nothing to do with the attack.

"He was not to know there were tiny spots of blood on his jeans, airborne blood, that puts Mr. Folley there at the time of the killing of Mr. Singh."

The isolated victim had spent Christmas Eve riding the buses of Bedford after finding a pass and was given the key to a flat in Calshot Walk by a kind friend.

The emergency services were only alerted when Folley rang 118 118 to find out the local police station number.

"In that call he said he needed an ambulance to come. There was a man outside his flat in a pool of blood and he did not know if he was dead or alive," explained Miss Dean.

Folley later changed his story, claiming he went inside to think about it after discovering the injured Mr. Singh.

After being charged with murder and remanded in custody the defendant "launched an attack on a fellow inmate" added Miss Dean.

He was pulled off the victim by prison officers, but minutes later shouted: "I'm going to kill someone, I'm going to kill someone."

Trial continues...............

Monday, 22 August 2011

Trio Of Burglars Caught Raiding Hospital Block

A teenage burglar, who equipped himself with two hammers, wire cutters and a length of plastic for slipping locks, targeted a landmark accommodation block for Royal Free Hospital staff with two younger accomplices in the middle of the night.

The trio were found at 3am wandering around a ground-floor office in Coppetts Wood House, Lawn Road, Hampstead when a nurse heard them breaking-in and called the police.

Music student David Newby, 18, of 88 Leverton Street, Kentish Town pleaded guilty at Blackfriars Crown Court to burgling the building (pictured) on May 18 and was sentenced to seventy hours community service.

Prosecutor Mrs Jag Shah told the court Newby and two youths, aged 16 and 15, who were separately dealt with were seen forcing open a ground-floor window by a resident looking down from above.

She heard voices at 3:00am saying: “See if you can get in there.”

“She shouted at them to go, but this did not deter them,” added Mrs Shah.

After the trio were caught it was also discovered the building’s main communal door lock had been broken with a sharp instrument.

“This young man is firmly on the slippery slope to a life of crime and needs to be stopped in his tracks,” announced Judge David Martineau, after hearing Newby has a warning for attempted robbery and theft from a vehicle.

“You could have got very easily from the office into the residential area,” the judge told the defendant.

“You burgled in a group in the middle of the night armed with two hammers, wire cutters and the length of plastic. It was clearly pre-planned and you were the oldest, you were the ringleader.”

Newby was also placed under supervision for twelve months and ordered to obey a strict nightime curfew for three months.

The ten-storey 141-unit building which comprises of studios and 1 and 2-bedroom flats was opened on October 20, 2008 by HRH The Duke of York, Patron of the Royal Free Hampstead NHS trust.