Search

Man jailed after Romford traveller had hand almost cut off in ‘hideously violent’ attack

PUBLISHED: 11:00 31 May 2016

Chelmsford Crown Court

Chelmsford Crown Court

Archant

A man has been jailed for eight years for his part in a bloodthirsty 30-second attack on a Romford traveller who had his hand virtually chopped off.

Chelmsford Crown Court heard the attack was the culmination if a catalogue of violence between two warring traveller families, on Friday.

Paul Saunders, 30, was one of three masked men who jumped out of a stolen car outside Nu-Bar, Loughton High Road, and set upon 24-year-old Edward Dooley.

Mr Dooley’s left hand was virtually severed in the attack and his left index finger was cut off.

He also suffered deep wounds to both legs, a fractured skull, and cuts to head, back and neck at 11.30pm on November 6 last year.

Saunders of Biggin Lane, Chadwell St Mary, pleaded guilty to inflicting grievous bodily harm with intent.

Judge David Turner QC told him : “This was a hideously violent attack on a man who was standing in the street. It was brutal, sustained, terrifying, witnessed by members of the public, at night in a busy high street.

“You had crow bars and machetes, heavily armed. He was a targeted individual. There was a frenzied attack – one eye witness said it was “as a pack of dogs”. Mr Dooley was left for dead with terrible injuries.

“This attack had a revenge or punishment dimension.”

The judge said there had been hostilities between the two families for nearly two years.

He accepted Saunders had reached the end of his tether but told him he couldn’t take the law into his own hands.

The court heard how the incident before the Loughton attack involved a shotgun fired six or seven times at Saunders’ parents’ home when his mother was inside with four sleeping children.

In other incidents, one of his brothers’ ears was severed in an attack and his brother and a cousin had been slashed across their stomachs.

The defendant’s wife has also been threatened with rape and his father Tony was shot in the face, the court heard.

Mitigating, Jeremy Dein QC told the judge that Saunders, a hard-working family man with no previous convictions, was “wracked with guilt” and angry at himself for becoming involved. He was not the main attacker.

Comments have been disabled on this article.

Latest Romford News Stories

47 minutes ago

“As for me, I remain an unapologetic conservative, a passionate supporter of Brexit and a big fan of our party grassroots!”

10:02

The story of a heroic American pilot who saved hundreds of school children during the Second World War is coming to Brookside Theatre.

08:29

A special carnival that was set up to put Collier Row on the map returns this summer.

Yesterday, 12:00

Letters, contributions and comments sent in from Recorder readers this week.

Yesterday, 10:00

A look back at the biggest local stories from this day 20, 40 and 60 years ago.

As an MP representing a “Greater London” constituency for 17 years, last week I decided to throw my hat in the ring to become the next Conservative Mayor of London.

Saturday, July 21, 2018

Prof Ged Martin takes a lightning tour of the borough’s vanished places of worship

Saturday, July 21, 2018

Wondering what the weather has in store for us this weekend? Watch our Met Office video forecast.

PROMOTED CONTENT

“The time to repair the roof is when the sun is shining,” so the saying goes. So if some warm weather is making your conservatory uninhabitable, think about replacing its roof with a flat one and adding a roof lantern instead.

The next step in renewable energy could be right beneath your feet as you walk through a Romford shopping centre.

There are many reasons people decide to join a gym. Some want to pack on muscle for strength, train for endurance, or lose weight. But did you know it also does wonders for your mental health? Two members at Romford’s Better Gym in the Market Place talk about their personal fitness journey and the importance of replacing bad habits with good ones.

Newsletter Sign Up

Romford Recorder twice-weekly newsletter
Sign up to receive our regular email newsletter

Our Privacy Policy

Most read news

Show Job Lists

News from your area

Digital Edition

cover

Enjoy the
Romford Recorder
e-edition today

Subscribe

Education and Training

cover

Read the
Education and Training
e-edition today

Read Now