Published Thursday, 26 July 2012
The judge told the accused the crime required an immediate custodial sentence. (© UTV)
Belfast Crown Court Judge Stephen Fowler QC told Jalal Uddin his crime of domestic violence was so serious it called for an immediate custodial sentence which must also include an element of deterence to others.
Judge Fowler said while he accepted that his former partner had written a letter urging mercy, unfortunately in such cases her opinion was "of limited assistance to the court".
However, he told a remorseful Uddin, from Darlett Street, Belfast, that because of the plea, he would "moderate" his four year sentence and reduce it by six months, of which he will serve 18 months in prison followed by two years on probation.
"I want to make it clear that the courts consider all offences of domestic violence as serious ... and that only a custodial sentence is justified," said Judge Fowler.
The judge said that while Uddin was a man of exemplary character, with a good work record and regarded by his former partner as a "good man and father", he had assaulted a vulnerable young woman in front of their young son and as such had breached the trust she had placed in him.
Uddin had, he added, bitten off part of her ear and "then spat it out, not caring if it could be stitched on again".
Defence lawyer Martin Morgan said that while what happened was a "vicious attack", it had "happened in the heat of the moment" in what was "a moment of madness".
Uddin, he said, was essentially a man of an impeccable background, an honourable man who knew the court could impose only one sentence, that of custody.
Mr Morgan said that in his probation report, which he described as being "saturated with remorse", Uddin accepted what he had done, indicating that he had "lost all self control at the time".
Mr Morgan added that if his former partner had "her way he would not be going to prison ... but he knows what is going to happen today."