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Grantham pair jailed for part in conspiracy to stop woman beaten in three-hour ordeal from giving evidence

Grantham men Michael Holmes and Liam Curtis
Grantham men Michael Holmes and Liam Curtis

Two Grantham men have been jailed for their part in a conspiracy to stop a woman beaten in a three-hour ordeal from giving evidence against her attacker.

Michael Holmes and Liam Curtis were jailed for seven years and four years respectively after pleading guilty at Nottingham Crown Court.

Christopher Magee
Christopher Magee

The case centred around Christopher Magee, who carried out the three-hour attack on the woman at her house in Derby in February 2015 – stamping on her head, hitting her with a stiletto heel and striking her with an iron with such force that it split in two.

The woman suffered life-threatening injuries and, while she was in intensive care, Magee, formerly of Keyhaven Close, Chaddesden, Derby, was arrested on suspicion of attempted murder.

But after being remanded in custody, the 31-year-old tried to discourage the woman from pursuing a conviction or giving evidence against him.

He then used acquaintances to plan a series of attacks against his victim and her family, to try and discourage them.

Martin Clarke
Martin Clarke

One of these attacks failed due to police fire-proofing the door, which Magee’s associates tried to set alight after pouring petrol on it.

Magee, who pleaded guilty to attempted murder, has now been jailed for life and will serve a minimum of 13-and-a-half years behind bars.

Holmes, 42, of Hawthorne Court, Grantham, was found guilty of being involved in the acid and arson attack conspiracies and was jailed for seven years. Curtis, 27, of Larch Close, Grantham, was found guilty of the arson conspiracy and was sentenced to four years behind bars.

Detective sergeant Steve Judge, who led the investigation, said: “Christopher Magee subjected his victim to an extreme, deliberate, sustained, degrading and brutally violent attack.

Robert Wyatt
Robert Wyatt

“But he did not stop there. While he was remanded in custody for that attack, he decided to try and prevent his victim from giving evidence against him – at any cost.

“Conspiring with others recruited while he was in prison, together they planned initially to carry out an acid attack, before then deciding to set fire to the home of the victim’s family.

“Fortunately, safety measures were put in place and that further, serious and deliberate attempted arson attack ultimately failed.

“I’m very happy with the sentence Magee has received, and that of his associates.

“What we must not forget is that, at the centre of this case, has been an innocent woman who very nearly lost her life.

“The bravery of the survivor and her family need commending. She stood firm and supported the prosecution regardless of the personal impact to her and her family.

“Now the case has reached its conclusion at court, hopefully she and her family will be able to move forward with their lives, knowing the man responsible has received the punishment he so richly deserves.”

Martin Clarke, 33, of HMP Dovegate, was found guilty of conspiring to commit arson with intent to endanger life and jailed for 10 years.

Robert Wyatt, 39, of Newark, admitted conspiracy to commit arson with intent to endanger life. He has been given a two-and-a-half year prison sentence.

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