A taxi driver who hit a drunken passenger with a wheelbrace has been ordered to pay £1500 in criminal injury compensation to his victim.
Bilal Hussain, 44, picked up a group of men who wanted to go to various destinations around Middlesbrough in 2011. Before the men got into the cab Hussain was paid £30 upfront to take them to Skelton.
Once they reached Saltburn, Hussain told the group they were not going to be taken anywhere else.
According to prosecutor Adrian Strong, this led to two men confronting Hussain during which he picked up the wheelbrace and hit his victim with it. He then drove away from the incident. His victim required eight stitches to mend the wound.
Mr Strong, speaking at Teeside Crown Court, stated that due to the attack the victim was unable to work at heights and suffered headaches. He is also awaiting a CT scan.
Hussain’s previous record did not help his cause as at court it transpired he had appeared only a few days earlier for damaging a car, and had served prison time for supplying heroin and possessing offensive weapons.
Defending Hussain, Sean Dryden said: “There is no dispute that the two men were drunk, and he accepts that he should not have become involved. There must have been a loss of temper on his part to allow the situation to develop as it did.”
Judge Michael Taylor, however, was reluctant to jail Hussain over the incident saying: “If I put you in prison, you will probably lose your job and he will not be compensated, but on balance I have decided that if you stay in work he can be compensated.”
Hussain was given a nine-month suspended jail sentence and ordered to pay his victim £1500 in compensation.