David Scott jailed for hammer attack on Thomas Spence

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A man who carried out a hammer attack after a woman celebrating a Celtic win was allegedly called a "Fenian" has been jailed for five years.

David Scott, 22, from Wishaw, was found guilty of attempting to murder 43-year-old Thomas Spence, who is from Belfast.

Co-accused Declan Duffy, 19, from Wishaw, was detained for four years and three months after being convicted of stabbing another man, William Gray.

The attacks took place in Shotts, North Lanarkshire, in February 2012.

The High Court in Glasgow heard that trouble flared shortly after the "Fenian" comment was made by one of the group with Mr Spence in the Allanton Miners' Club.

Head injuries

The remark was uttered after Christine Hill, who was attending a christening party, walked through into the bar area where Mr Spence and his friends were drinking.

She cheered when she saw on the television that Celtic had beaten Hibs and were 17 points clear in the league.

Later Mr Spence and his group were attacked as they walked along Kirk Path.

He suffered a fractured skull, bleeding on the brain and a broken ankle after he was smashed over the head once with a mallet by Scott.

Mr Gray - a drummer with the County of Motherwell Flute Band - was stabbed four times and suffered a collapsed lung.

Both accused claimed that they were acting in self-defence and feared an attack from Mr Spence and his friends but they were convicted following a trial.

The court heard that Mr Spence has 77 previous convictions in Northern Ireland including attempted murder and riotous behaviour to support a proscribed organisation.

During his time behind bars in Northern Ireland he was classified as a political prisoner, but in evidence denied being a member of the Ulster Volunteer Force.

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