James Gwatkin news

James Gwatkin appears for defendant acquitted in affray case

Following a six day trial at Cardiff Crown Court, James Gwatkin’s client, NR was acquitted. He had been charged with a serious affray involving weapons. The allegations dated back to July 2020. NR, along with his co-Defendant FR, was accused of illegally fishing using gill nets at the river Rhymney just outside of Caerphilly (an offence under The Salmon and Freshwater Fisheries Act 1975).

When challenged by volunteer bailiffs from the local angling club regarding their activities, it was alleged that NR and FR threatened the complainants with an air gun and a large knife, before chasing the complainants away while armed with those weapons. It was also alleged that they threw rocks at the complainants and threatened to kill them.

The defence put forward was that the Defendants did not use or threaten unlawful violence and that they were, in fact, the victims of violent behaviour by the complainants.

James cross-examined four civilian witnesses and three police officers during a trial which lasted six days. Following the jury’s deliberations NR was unanimously acquitted of affray. His co-defendant MR, who was tried in absence without representation was also acquitted of affray. For the unlicensed fishing offence, NR received a 12 month conditional discharge, bringing proceedings to an end after nearly three and a half years.

James was instructed by Craig Bond and Charlotte Davies of M&M Solicitors.