Wales

Margam footballer guilty of hitting 11 boys with car

Lee Taylor Image copyright Wales News Service
Image caption Lee Taylor will be sentenced next month

A footballer has been convicted of using his car as a "one tonne weapon" to "knock down spectators like skittles" after his team lost a match.

Lee Taylor drove his BMW into 11 rival supporters, some as young as 14, after his side lost 5-0.

The 36-year-old Margam player "lost his temper" and drove into the victims after a game in Cornelly, Bridgend county, on 19 April 2018.

Taylor, from Port Talbot, will be sentenced in April.

A jury found him guilty of dangerous driving and 11 counts of attempting to do grievous bodily harm with intent.

He claimed he was trying to escape the teenagers when he got into his car after they called him "fatty".

Image copyright Google
Image caption Lee Taylor's Margam side had been beaten 5-0 by Cornelly United at their Meadow Street ground
Image copyright CPS
Image caption The tyre marks on the pitch from Lee Taylor's BMW after he drove into the group of teenagers - and his windscreen after the incident

Taylor claimed he did not know he had hit the boys until the police arrested him later that day.

He told the court he was trying to break up a confrontation between a Margam teammate and 15 to 20 young supporters of rivals Cornelly United outside the changing rooms when the group turned on him.

But Christopher Rees, prosecuting, said Taylor "got into his car to drive at the youths because he lost his temper".

Some of the boys were thrown up into the air and it was only by "sheer good fortune" none suffered injuries worse than cuts and bruising, he added.

"It was an attack that was out of all proportion to the playground nonsense that happened beforehand."

Image copyright CPS
Image caption Some of the victims were as young as 14 and escaped with only minor injuries

Newport Crown Court was told he had previous convictions for 24 offences, including criminal damage, taking vehicles without authority, common assault and affray.

Judge Daniel Williams said he would consider handing down an extended sentence for the "serious offences" after a report by the probation service.

After the hearing, Janine Davies, from the CPS, said: "Lee Taylor used his car as a weapon, deliberately driving at the group.

"When cars are used as weapons the consequences can be devastating. We wish all those injured in this incident a speedy recovery."

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