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'Sadistic' Accrington gang is jailed for reign of terror

A ‘sadistic’ gang that inflicted horrifying injuries on a disabled man have been jailed for a total of 23 years.

ROSS WALSH

A ‘sadistic’ gang that inflicted horrifying injuries on a disabled man have been jailed for a total of 23 years.

Police have released shocking images of the injuries caused to the victim, which detectives say are some of the worst they have ever seen.

The victim was subjected to a terrifying campaign of violence by the gang who regularly invited him to their previous home on Hudson Street, Accrington, to play video games.

The 30-year-old was beaten with a cricket bat, metal bars, punched and kicked during July and August last year.

On one occasion he was taken into the cellar by Ross Walsh, 30, who took a knife to his shoulder and threatened to torture him.

The victim suffered internal bleeding, broken ribs, breast bone, shoulders and back, at the hands of Ross Walsh, as well as Sohail Abbas, 20, and Faran Abbas, 18, both of Midland Street, Accrington.

‘Sadistic’ Ross Walsh was jailed for 10 years for his part in the violence at Burnley Crown Court. His wife Christina, 36, who is said to have been present  but did not take part in the violence, was jailed for five years along with Sohail Abbas, who received the same sentence.

Faran Abbas was sent to a young offenders institute for three and a half years having taken a ‘lesser role’.

All four defendants were found guilty of conspiracy to inflict GBH with intent.

Judge Andrew Woolman said all four defendants had taken advantage of the victim who suffered ‘truly appalling’ injuries and had been psychologically scarred.

He said Ross Walsh had played the ‘leading role’ in the violence and had been the ‘prime motivator’.

He told Ross Walsh: “You played a particularly sadistic role.”

The judge accepted that mother-of three Christina Walsh had not been involved in the violence, but had failed to protect Mr Busby. He said: “You were to some extent under the thumb of your husband Ross Walsh.”

Phillip Holden, defending Ross Walsh, said it would be dangerous to suggest he had solely inflicted all of the injuries and said he had not pushed the other defendants to become involved.

Kevin Donnelley, for Christina Walsh, said she had been the victim of bullying for many years and this could have affected her ability to intervene. Robert Elias, for Sohail Abbas, said the expectant father  was ‘in the shadow’ of Ross Walsh.

Daniel King, defending Faran Abbas, said he had been just 17 at the time of his involvement and it was out of character.

After the hearing, DC Helen Mercer said the gang had committed a ‘heinous’ crime.

She added: “They started out looking after the victim but it became a game and it was the most terrible game you could imagine.”

 

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