Thursday, 16 January 2014

Crazy Behaviour

Here's an incredible story from the Scotsman which tells the tale of a elected Labour councillor, David Walker, in Edinburgh who intervened in a court case to argue that a man accused of a violent assault be spared a jail sentence.

Now I don't know Councillor Walker, but that seems an extraordinary thing for someone in his position to do - so well done to the judge who described his intervention as 'preposterous' and has called on Councillor to apologise.

I think the councillor must also owe his local constituents an explanation for his behaviour and the council's Labour Group which must be mortified that anyone could act so stupidly.     

Savage security boss who burned a victim with cigarettes, beat him up, dumped him in a rottweiler's kennel and poured boiling water over him backed in court by Labour councillor

COUNCILLOR David Walker wrote to the judge asking that thug John Lindsay be spared jail despite his vicious attack on victim Jamie Alexander in Edinburgh.

By Mark Aitken, Wilma Riley
John Lindsay

A LABOUR councillor who asked a judge not to jail a security boss convicted of savagely torturing a man has been told to apologise.

The victim was thrown to 52-year-old thug John Lindsay’s dogs and had boiling water poured over his groin during a terrifying 90-minute ordeal.

David Walker wrote to judge Lord Turnbull on Edinburgh City Council notepaper asking that Lindsay be spared jail despite his vicious attack.

In an outspoken attack in a hearing at the High Court on Thursday, Lord Turnbull described the intervention as “preposterous”. He added that he had never “seen anything more ridiculous” in his judicial career.

The judge added: “This is an act of barbaric torture over a prolonged period of time on a vulnerable young man. This councillor proposes it should be dealt with by a non-custodial sentence.

“What troubles me is the way in which this individual does so in his public capacity.”

Lord Turnbull ordered his clerk to make Walker, the councillor for the Craigmillar/Portobello ward, aware of the full facts of the case and ask for an apology.

He remanded Lindsay and made it clear he would be facing a lengthy jail sentence for the attack on July 12 in Whitehill Road, Edinburgh.

Victim Jamie Alexander said he wandered into an unlocked house having lost his return ticket from Falkirk to Edinburgh and was looking for directions.

David Walker 

He had no money and had been sleeping rough for days.

Jamie was confronted in the house by Lindsay’s wife Helen.

She told him to sit on a bench and phoned her husband, who turned up with two men.

All three men approached Jamie and repeatedly kicked and punched him, before dragging him to a kennel area and told to have “a think about things.”

He was thrown into the kennel with a rottweiler and another dog. Lindsay and the two other men later re-entered the kennel area and Jamie’s wrists and ankles were bound with cable ties.

He was then subjected to a prolonged and vicious attack, during which he was repeatedly asked who he was and why he was there.

He was also repeatedly accused of stealing, which he denied.

Prosecutors told how Lindsay left before returning with a chair and sitting down next to his victim.

He repeatedly stubbed a lit cigarette into Jamie’s body and used a lock-type knife to cut him on the left arm and body.

After about an hour and a half, he was told to wash himself at an outdoor sink and given a rag to wipe the blood off his face.

Jamie was told the men would come after him if he told the police what had happened. He was then given six £1 coins and told to go. One of the unidentified men told him he should consider himself lucky as “hardly anyone gets away.”

He suffered two black eyes and his nose was broken in two places. He had marks on his left arm consistent with cigarette burns and he had scald marks to his hands and thigh.

Lindsay’s defence QC Neil Murray said: “This was a horrific ordeal for this young man and there is no real explanation for it.”

Walker is likely to come under severe pressure after the criticism from Lord Turnbull. He may also be probed over his use of the notepaper on unofficial business.

Yesterday he was not available at his family address. His ex-wife Karen said he had moved out some time ago. He was not available at another home he owns in the city and did not respond to emails sent by the Sunday Mail.

Council leader Andrew Burns said: “This was a personal matter and David should have dealt with it privately and not referenced that he is an elected councillor.

“I’m sure that was a genuine error and that David regrets the action he took.”

Cameron Rose, Tory group leader in Edinburgh, said: “Councillor Walker’s voters will certainly want to know more about why he chose to make this intervention.

“He now needs to explain urgently why he did this and what the reasons were behind it.”

Edinburgh City Council said that the security firm formerly owned by Lindsay, JSL, had not received contracts from the council.

Lindsay’s 30-year-old son John jnr was jailed for eight years at the High Court in Edinburgh in 2007 for killing 62-year-old Neil Duffy.

He had his plea of not guilty to assaulting Mr Alexander accepted, as did Lindsay’s wife Helen, 52.