Glasgow & West Scotland

John Clark jailed for Robert Bell samurai sword attack

A man has been jailed for five years over a samurai sword attack which severed another man's jugular vein.

John Clark, 22, struck Robert Bell, 38, with the sword during a party in Paisley, Renfrewshire, in July 2011.

The High Court in Edinburgh heard that Mr Bell was wounded four more times and only survived after emergency surgery.

Clark admitted a charge of assault to the danger of life. Co-accused Grant Hainey admitted assault and charges of breaching bail. Sentence was deferred.

Both men had faced charges of attempted murder but had guilty pleas to the lesser charges accepted by the Crown.

Drugs cocktail

Hainey also pleaded guilty to three charges of breaching court bail between December 2010 and July 2011.

At a previous hearing, the High Court in Glasgow heard how Clark had taken a cocktail of methadone and Temazepan, washed down with cider, Buckfast and vodka, before going to the party in Paisley.

After Mr Bell asked one of the guests to leave, Clark picked up the sword which was hanging over a fireplace and repeatedly struck him with it.

Hainey, who was drunk and had fallen asleep on the floor, was said to be unaware of the violence until he felt a blow to his back and realised he had been stabbed.

During the ensuing violence, Hainey punched and kicked Mr Clark who later suffered "uncontrollable and substantial blood loss" after the sword attack.

Judge Lord Mackay deferred sentence on Hainey for reports, saying the court recognised that he played a minor role in the attack on Mr Bell.

The judge told Clark that he had no other option but to send him to jail.

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