A 28-year-old man has this afternoon been cleared of murder, but found guilty of the manslaughter of a Cameroon national who died in hospital more than three weeks after he was assaulted.
Achu Dickson Ngu, 55, underwent surgery for a brain haemorrhage at Leeds General Infirmary after he was repeatedly punched by Tauseef Younis during an attack at a house on Redcar Street, Halifax.
The prosecution alleged during Younis’ trial at Bradford Crown Court that his victim was subjected to a “sustained and deliberate” assault at the terraced house.
Younis, of Harvest Court, Halifax, was charged with murder after Mr Ngu died on June 21.
The jury heard that Younis, who denied the murder charge, handed himself in to police four days after the incident at the house.
In his interview Younis claimed that Mr Ngu had gripped him and that he (Younis) had punched him once in the teeth and again in the jaw before leaving the house.
“He said the punches were not hard, about four on a scale of one to 10,” prosecutor Jonathan Sharp told the jury.
“He agreed that basically he was saying that he had acted in self defence.”
After Mr Ngu’s death Younis was re-interviewed and in a prepared statement he said he had punched him “no more that three times”.
At the LGI Mr Ngu was given a scan which indicated that his brain had moved within the skull rupturing a vein and causing a haemorrhage.
The jury took less than three hours to find Younis not guilty of murder, but they unanimously convicted him on the alternative charge of manslaughter.
Barrister Richard Wright QC, for Younis, said his client had offered a plea to manslaughter earlier and the attack on Mr Ngu had been “short-lived”.
Jailing Younis for seven years Judge David Hatton QC said he had to have full regard to the fact that Younis had not intended to kill his victim or cause him really serious injury.
“Nevertheless this was an attack on an older and, in my judgement, vulnerable man,” the judge told Younis.
Mr Ngu was punched as he sat on a sofa at the house and Judge Hatton said there was no evidence that he had offered any resistance to the attack by Younis.
“Although the attack was limited to the use of your fists and did not involve any weapon or shod feet the blows that you inflicted with your fist were of clearly substantial force and caused devastating injury.”
In a victim impact statement Mr Ngu’s brother said his death had shocked his community and he wished he could have been with his brother to protect him when he most needed him.