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Pensioner jailed for 10 years over knife attack

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A DELUDED Garnant pensioner stabbed a pharmacist he believed was involved in the over prescription of medication, a judge heard this week.
 
Peter Bellett, aged 69, stabbed Michael Irons so viciously the four inch knife went through his left arm and he had to be flown by air ambulance to Morriston Hospital.
 
Bellett, of Wern Road, told police he felt he had to do something drastic to highlight his grievance.
 
Bellett admitted wounding with intent.
 
Before the case against Bellett was opened at Swansea Crown Court, consultant psychiatrist Dr Tom Rhodri Wynn said he had diagnosed him as suffering from a delusional disorder.
 
He said Bellett had known what he was doing but would have been less likely to do it if he had not been ill.
 
Paul Hobson, prosecuting, then explained how on December 5, 2016, Bellett had walked into the local pharmacy and waited until he was alone with Mr Irons.
 
He spoke to Mr Irons about his concerns “but did not get the answers he wanted” and pulled out a four inch knife.
 
Bellett stabbed him and tried to gouge out his eyes but Mr Irons managed to push him away and ran from the shop.
 
He took refuge in the doctors’ surgery opposite, where he received initial treatment.
 
Mr Hobson said doctors estimated he lost half a litre of blood and that the stab had been so severe it had left an exit wound.
 
While Mr Irons was making his escape Bellett himself called the police, telling them what he had done and adding that he would explain why when they arrived.
 
After being arrested he told the officers, “I could really do with a cup of tea.”
 
During interviews Bellett said he blamed Dr Duncan Williams, of the Garnant surgery, for over prescribing him medicine and Mr Irons for “going along with it and profiting from it.”
 
He said he had intended to seriously injure him but not to kill him.
 
His barrister, Dyfed Thomas, said his delusion in relation to medicines was global in nature and even involved the Freemasons.
 
In a victim impact statement Mr Irons said “the horror of those few minutes go round and round in my head.”
 
He added that he had worked in the pharmacy for more than 30 years but going back to work had been almost unbearable.
 
Mr Irons said he had since decided to sell the business.
 
Bellett was also appearing for child sex offences dating back more than 30 years when he had molested a six year old girl, which he admitted.
 
Judge Paul Thomas said he had carried out that attack without any concern for the effect it might have on her.
 
“There is no evidence that you were mentally ill at that time.  You thought only of yourself and told her no-one would believe her if she complained.”
 
Judge Thomas said by 2016 Bellett had developed the mental disorder he now suffered from.
 
“It was an wholly unprovoked, premeditated, ferocious and determined attack on an unarmed man simply doing his job,” he added.
 
Bellett was jailed for a total of 10 years.
 
Initially he will be treated at the Caswell Clinic, near Bridgend, for his mental disorder and will be transferred to prison when psychiatrists deem him to be sufficiently well.

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Drink driver hospitalised and arrested

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A MAN who was hospitalised after crashing his car on the B4310, Drefach, has also been arrested for drink driving.

The crash, which happened in the early hours of Sunday morning (Feb 18), destroyed the Mercedes he was driving.

He hit a van which was parked outside of a property, which was also damaged.

Dyfed-Powys Police, Welsh Ambulance Service, and Mid and West Wales Fire and Rescue Service personnel attended the scene.

A spokesman for Mid and West Wales Fire and Rescue Service said: “We were called to reports of a road traffic collision at 12.50am on Sunday morning on the B4310 in Drefach.

“We sent crews from Pontyates and Tumble at the scene and one male was cut out of a car using hydraulic cutting equipment and taken to hospital.”

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‘Connecting Carmarthenshire’ campaign takes a leap forward

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Making progress: Jonathan Edwards MP, Adam Price AM and Geraint Trello

EFFORTS to improve the availability of high speed internet and good mobile phone signal took a leap forward this week as EE sets about switching on new mobile phone masts and launches its 4G Home Broadband solution.

Representatives of EE came to Carmarthenshire this weekend to meet with Member of Parliament, Jonathan Edwards and Assembly Member, Adam Price who have led a ‘Connecting Carmarthenshire’ campaign.

Their meeting, which took place near the site of one of two new mobile phone masts near Abergorlech, focused on the upgrades and improvements the company is undertaking across rural Carmarthenshire, with a particular focus on EE’s new 4G Home Broadband solution which can provide superfast broadband via an antenna on the house – a solution EE says could help around 580,000 homes nationwide gain access to high speed connectivity.

The Plaid Cymru politicians said the new improved mobile signal was itself “a big advancement”, but said the launch of the 4G antenna was “a leap forward” for connecting rural Carmarthenshire communities.

Member of Parliament Jonathan Edwards said: “It was a pleasure to welcome EE to Carmarthenshire and continue our discussions on improving connectivity in rural Wales. One new mast will be switched on in Abergorlech in a matter of weeks, with another new mast for the Llansawel region with us later in the year.

“These new masts add to the 27 4G upgrades EE has carried out to existing sites in Carmarthenshire over the last 12 months, providing better coverage for rural communities including Llanybydder, Pencader and Llanarthne, adding to the upgrades from other mobile phone giants across the county.

“Perhaps the most impressive news this week is the launch of EE’s Home Broadband solution which, with the use of a small antenna on the home, can bring superfast broadband to the house. This looks like it could be the answer for many properties which have been left behind during the fixed line upgrades, or where they can only receive slower fixed broadband speeds.

“It’s not for an elected representative to promote a particular private company, but where there appears to be a solution for so many properties to get high speed internet, I have no problem in promoting the product – particularly because when it was trialed it delivered speeds over 100Mbps! This is a giant leap forward.

“Connecting Carmarthenshire is really starting to see positive results, but I’ll keep on working to ensure everyone I represent achieves good connectivity.”

Assembly Member Adam Price said: “The new sites in the Abergorlech area are the latest in a long time of upgrades in recent months, with the added bonus of those mobile signals being used for superfast internet in the home.

“Given that various grants for broadband solutions are available from the Welsh Government, we believe those who can’t get access to fixed broadband connections or receive a glacial pace connection may well be able to receive a grant to have products like 4G Home Broadband installed at their homes.

“I’d encourage anyone who is interested in a grant to cover the costs of delivering a step change in their broadband speeds to visit the Welsh Government’s website to check eligibility, or contact Jonathan and I where we can send information to them directly.

“More and more people across our Carmarthen East and Dinefwr constituency are seeing the benefits of good mobile phone signal and much faster broadband. We’ve still got a little way to go, but local residents are seeing big advancements. We’re delighted the Connecting Carmarthenshire campaign is delivering tangible results for the county.”

On the launch of EE’s 4G Home Broadband solution, Max Taylor, Managing Director of Marketing, EE said: “As our network continues to expand into some of the most remote parts of the UK, we’ve seen the amazing impact that 4G connectivity can have on rural communities. Our newest 4G home broadband router and antenna takes this one step further, ensuring thousands of families in rural areas across the UK could enjoy the benefits of superfast broadband inside their home for the very first time – whether video-calling the grandparents or streaming their favourite TV series.”

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4.4 magnitude earthquake felt across Wales

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AN earthquake of 4.4 magnitude has been felt across Wales and England this afternoon (Feb 17).

There are numerous reports of the earthquake being felt across west Wales, including Pembrokeshire, Carmarthenshire and Ceredigion.

The earthquake originated near Swansea, where it is was felt strongest, at around 2:30pm.

However, the earthquake was felt across Wales, and many parts of England.

The EMSC, an independent monitor of earthquakes, said: “Latest update of the effects of the #earthquake in #Swansea region. Was felt up to 300 km from epicentre.”

Dyfed-Powys Police received many reports about the incident, but said that there was no need for concern, and that they felt it themselves in their control room.

The police force said: “We are receiving an extremely high call volume reporting some sort of earth tremor in the area – we are receiving reports from across the whole of Wales (we felt it in our control room too!). For now – it is unexplained – but there is nothing to worry about.”

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