herald

Monday 11 December 2017

Chef punched and called man 'a Paki' in front of children

A ST Patrick's Day reveller called another man "a Paki b*****d" in front of his wife and children and then repeatedly punched him in an unprovoked assault, a court heard.

David Nerfin (42) left the victim with sore ribs, bruising to the head and abrasions on his right arm following the roadside attack.

He had denied the assault, claiming he slapped the man twice to protect himself after he and his family had been insulted.

Nerfin claimed the row started after the victim refused to move as he and a friend were trying to pass him on a footpath.

Finding him guilty of assault, Judge Michael Walsh ordered Nerfin to complete 180 hours of community service in lieu of nine months in prison.

He also ordered him to pay €300 compensation to the injured party.

The defendant, with an address at Camden Street, Dublin 2, was found guilty before Dublin District Court of assault.

The incident took place at Stamer Street, Dublin 8, on March 17 last year.

A second man, a friend of the defendant, previously admitted to his part in the attack.

The court had heard that the victim, his wife and three young children were on their way back to their car after watching the St Patrick's Day parade. He said he was minding his own business and putting a child's buggy in the car when Nerfin approached him, shouting "you f***ing Paki b*****d".

He said he ignored him, but Nerfin started to punch him, causing him to fall on to a car. The victim also claimed that Nerfin followed his wife around their car and was impolite to his children.

The court heard the victim's back and ribs were tender after the assault, and his doctor prescribed anti-inflammatory tablets.

IGNORANT

In his evidence, Nerfin claimed that he and his friend were walking along the footpath when he saw the victim at a parking meter. The victim denied this, saying parking was free as it was a public holiday.

Nerfin claimed the man was blocking the path. He and his friend were unable to pass him as the path is narrow, and words were exchanged.

Nerfin said the victim was "ignorant" towards him. He further claimed the victim walked towards him in an aggressive manner.

As a result, he lifted his hands to protect himself, slapping him twice on the face.

He denied punching him or kicking him and also denied calling him a "f***ing Paki b*****d". Nerfin, who was wearing a St Patrick's Day hat and heading to the parade, said he was in a good mood and denied he was aggressive towards the victim.

He said he had drunk three or four pints, but said he was not drunk.

He also said he did not see the victim's wife or children, and said he did not follow his wife around their car.

Judge Walsh said he was satisfied that Nerfin had assaulted the victim, though he accepted his co-accused was probably the main aggressor.

The court heard that the defendant has three previous convictions, all for public order matters.

Defence lawyer Ian Fitzharris said the defendant is a qualified chef and has worked in some of Dublin's top hotels, including the Gresham and Westin.

Mr Fitzharris said Nerfin is currently out of work following an accident in which he slipped on some glass and damaged his knee and hand. He said Nerfin was on crutches for some time and is still unable to stand for long periods.

Mr Fitzharris asked the judge to be as lenient as possible, saying Nerfin's financial circumstances are dire.

He also said alcohol did not appear to be a factor in the assault.

hnews@herald.ie

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