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'Wicked' Accrington man, 30, faces long sentence after 'sadistic' campaign against vulnerable neighbour

Ross Walsh, 30, took the victim into a cellar and threatened to torture him, attacked him with a cricket bat and metal bars and beat him on several occasions

Ross Walsh

A 'wicked' neighbour who led a campaign of violence against a vulnerable man has been told he faces a lengthy prison sentence.

‘Sadistic’ Ross Walsh, 30, took the victim into a cellar and threatened to torture him, attacked him with a cricket bat and metal bars and beat him on several occasions at his Accrington home, during two months last summer.

The father-of-three is also said to have stepped on the victim’s neck until he turned blue.

In many of the incidents his wife, Christina Walsh, 36, is said to have looked on.

This morning, a jury at Burnley Crown Court took just over two hours to find the couple guilty of conspiracy to cause GBH with intent.

Brothers Sohail Abbas, 20 and Farran Abbas, 18, who are friends of the Walsh family, were also found guilty of the same charge.

Judge Andrew Woolman said it had been an ‘unusual and unpleasant’ case with ‘particularly nasty elements’.

He remanded all four defendants in custody until sentencing on December 5 because of the ‘sadistic elements’ to their offences.

He told them: “The sentence you can all expect will be substantial.”

Prosecutor Joe Boyd previously told the court how the victim suffered internal bleeding to his lungs, extensive bruising and multiple fractures to his rib cage, sternum, shoulders and back as a result of the attacks - said to have taken place at a house on Hudson Street, in July and August last year.

Mr Boyd said the Farran brothers had, on one occasion, beaten Mr Busby with a cricket bat for 'recreation'.

He also told jurors that Christina Walsh took the victim to a cash machine each fortnight in order to withdraw his benefits money.

In one incident Ross Walsh took the victim into the cellar so neighbours 'would not hear his screams', threatened to torture him and cut his shoulder with an army knife.

All four defendants denied the claims throughout the two-week trial.

The defence team argued that Mr and Mrs Walsh, of Stanley Street, Accrington, and the Abbas brothers, of Midland Street, Accrington, had in fact looked after the complainant and were his friends.

In police interviews Christina Walsh said she had looked after the victim and was doing 'his mother's job'.

 

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