Car dealer recruited gang to beat up Colne mechanics

A CAR dealer, who recruited a gang to viciously beat up two mechanics because his vehicle wasn’t resprayed in time, has been ordered to pay £1,000 compensation and £1,400 court costs.

A judge did not jail father-of-three Mohammed Mazar as he had led a ‘blameless life’ and had family responsibilities.

Mazar, of Knotts Lane, Colne, was given 26 weeks in custody, suspended for a year, with 200 hours of unpaid work. Mazar was also ordered to pay £1,400 costs and £500 compensation to each victim.

The defendant had recently been convicted by a jury on two counts of assault causing actual bodily harm and one of affray.

He had denied the charges against him and told the jury the trouble had been nothing to do with him and he had tried to stop it.

Burnley Crown Court heard Mazar had been angry with Deividas Zirgulis and Thomas Vaitonas, of T and D Body Shop in Colne, because he had been told the Mercedes minibus would take about a week, but it ended up taking about a month.

Mazar, said to have been losing money on the vehicle, which he wanted to sell, had ‘snapped’, left their garage and arranged for some friends to attack the two victims in September 2011.

The court had been told a stick or a bar was used in the violence.

Mr Zirgulis suffered a broken right hand and Mr Vaitonas had bruises to his arm and leg.

Michael Bridge, for Mazar, told the sentencing hearing his behaviour was out of character.

He continued: “Generally speaking, he is a man who has a positive role within his own community and the wider community.

“He provides much-needed support to family members who are ill.”

Sentencing, Recorder Robert Crawford said: “Thankfully, the injuries sustained were not as serious as they could have been. In my judgement, this was a serious business. You set out to recruit a group to beat these men up.

“That’s totally unacceptable behaviour and behaviour which, in my judgement, crosses the custody threshold.

But, Recorder Crawford added: “You have led a blameless life for many years, are in work and have serious family responsibilities.

“That just tips the balance to save you from immediate imprisonment.”

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