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Boxer jailed for manslaughter

February 19, 2013, 11:06 am

An amateur boxer with a history of violence has been jailed at the Old
Bailey for the manslaughter of a man outside a pub in SW1.

Graham Brett, 50 (14/06/62), of Ebury Bridge Road, SW1, pleaded guilty
today, 18 February, on the first day of his trial for the killing of
Neil Hannah, and was sentenced to four years’ imprisonment with another
three years added as an extended sentence for public safety.

Mr Hannah, an Australian national aged 49, died at St Thomas’ Hospital
in the early hours of 7 August 2012 after he was attacked by Brett and
sustained serious head injuries on the evening of 2 August.

Brett and Mr Hannah, who were not previously known to each other, had
both been drinking in the Greyhound pub, in Hugh Street.

Witnesses reported brief contact between the pair inside the pub before
Brett asked Mr Hannah to go outside on to the street at around 22.20hrs.

CCTV footage viewed by officers showed the two men outside the pub.
Brett is seen to remove his glasses and talk to Mr Hannah and then,
without any warning or provocation, punch Mr Hannah in the face. The
blow caused the victim to fall to the floor where his skull was
fractured by its impact with the pavement.

London Ambulance Service attended and the victim was taken to hospital.
Police were subsequently alerted at 01.16hrs by hospital staff and an
investigation began.

Brett was arrested on 3 August and in interview claimed that Mr Hannah
had bitten his nose during the confrontation outside the Greyhound. CCTV
footage disproved this claim, however, and the victim is known to have
needed false teeth which he was not wearing at the time of the assault.

Initially, Brett was charged with GBH with intent on 3 August, but this
was changed to murder following Mr Hannah’s death. A plea was
manslaughter was accepted by the prosecution and judge at the Old Bailey
on 18 February 2013.

Detective Inspector Simon Pickford, of the Homicide and Serious Crime
Command, said: “Brett has a history of violence and as a boxer would
have known that his forceful blow was likely to send Mr Hannah to the
floor. He then compounded his violent act by trying to concoct a reason
for the punch – one that was not borne out by any of the evidence seen
by our officers.

“While Brett may not have intended to kill his victim, I have little
doubt that he is a violent thug who fully deserves to spend a lengthy
period of time behind bars.

“Our thoughts must now go to the friends and family of Mr Hannah who are
dealing with the consequences of Brett’s violent tendencies.”

Below: Mr Hannah

Below: Graham Brett

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