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Man accused of chip shop murder to stand trial in May

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THE MAN accused of murdering Carmarthenshire chip shop owner Mavis Bran will go on trial in May next year, a judge announced this afternoon (Nov 26)

Her husband Geoffrey Bran, aged 70, made his first appearance at Swansea Crown Court via video link with Swansea prison, where he is being held in custody.

Bran is accused of causing fatal burns to his 69-year-old wife at the chip shop in the grounds of their home in the hamlet of Hermon on October 23.

She died six days later in Swansea’s Morriston hospital.

Bran, dressed in a maroon crew neck jumper, spoke only to confirm his name, nationality and date of birth.

Rachel Knight, prosecuting, told the court that police were still gathering evidence and various experts would be called to help with the causation of death and the nature of the burns suffered by Mrs Bran.

Judge Keith Thomas said the trial would begin on May 7 and is expected to last two weeks.

He said the trial would be conducted by Judge Paul Thomas, who will preside over the next hearing on February 25.

That will be the date when Bran will be asked to enter a plea to the charge of murder.

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Newcastle Emlyn: Gay IT consultant convicted of stalking

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A GAY information technology consultant from Newcastle Emlyn has been convicted today of stalking an 18 year old youth causing him harassment.

Christopher Jay Hardy, aged 35, landed himself in more trouble when it was discovered that he had been recording on his mobile telephone virtually his entire trial at Swansea Crown Court.
Hardy, of Penlon, Pentrecagal, had denied the charge.
The jury had heard how Hardy had met the youth when he worked at a garage.
The youth told the jury how he quit his job to escape Hardy’s unwanted attentions.
But Hardy tracked him down to his home in Pencader, left unwanted gifts and letters on his car and repeatedly visited his home despite being told to stay away by his parents.
Hardy continued to try and contact the youth even after police had arrested him and at one stage attended his home pretending to be canvassing for the Labour Party.
The youth said he was not gay and had been “freaked out” by Hardy’s pursuit of him.
Hardy admitted he had become infatuated with the youth and said he believed he was under pressure from his family to pretend he was straight.
After the jury returned a unanimous verdict of guilty Judge Paul Thomas told Hardy, who represented himself, he was “deluded” and briefly sent him into custody because he refused to shut up and listen.
He was made to delete the audio files in front of a police officer.
Hardy will be sentenced after reports have been prepared by a psychiatrist and a probation officer and was granted bail until then.
Judge Thomas described him as an “obsessive individual” and warned him that all sentencing options would be open to the court.
He issued a restraining order preventing Hardy from contact in the youth or his parents by any means.
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Carer accused of ill-treatment of a patient

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A CARER from Carmarthen is to stand trial accused of ill-treating a patient.

Joaquím Moreira, aged 47, appeared before Judge Geraint Walters at Swansea Crown Court for a plea and trial preparation hearing.

Moreira, of Water Street, is accused of ill trill-treatment having the care of a person lacking the capacity to look after himself.

Moreira is also accused of assaulting the man by beating.

He denied both accusations.

Moreira will stand trial on March 19 and was granted bail until then.

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Popular inn sold to local businessman

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THE SALE of The Nag’s Head Inn, the riverside pub situated in North Pembrokeshire, to a local businessman was recently completed by business property advisers Christie & Co.

Situated on the banks of the Afon Cych, close to the Carmarthenshire and Ceredigion borders, The Nag’s Head occupies a substantial stone-built property, which was sympathetically extended in the 1980s and recently refurbished by the previous owners in 2017 to provide a spacious and welcoming interior, with flagstone floors, wood burning stoves and beamed ceilings.

The pub comprises four trading areas across the ground floor, including a main bar, a cosy snug and extensive dining areas, and a beer garden, which provides stunning views over the river. Additionally, the property benefits from three en suite guest bedrooms and three bedroom owner’s accommodation on the first floor.

Over the years, the previous owner has grown and developed a strong local and regional reputation for The Nag’s Head, which was selected as one of the ‘Top 10 UK Riverside Pubs’ in The Guardian in June 2017 and has been awarded a Certificate of Excellence from TripAdvisor, while also maintaining a 4.5 rating and excellent reviews on the review website.

Following three years of ownership, previous owner, Mr Miller has decided to sell The Nag’s Head to move onto new business ventures. He said: “We have enjoyed our time at the property and have invested a lot of time and effort in to turning the business around and are looking forward to focusing on our other business interests.”

New owner, Mr Dewi Davies, who also owns the nearby award-winning holiday complex, Clydey Cottages, is looking forward to taking over the reins of The Nag’s Head and putting his own stamp on the business. Mr Davies commented: “I am delighted to be taking over the Nag’s Head from Steve and Tracy Miller. They have done a marvellous job over the past two years, building the reputation both locally and nationally, and we have inherited a great team. For the time being, it’s business as usual for the festive season and we are all excited about the future for the Nag’s Head.”

Corrina Jones, Senior Business Agent at Christie & Co’s Cardiff office, handled the sale and said: “The Nag’s Head Inn is a well maintained public house with a warm and inviting atmosphere. I would like to wish Mr Miller all the best with his new business ventures. I look forward to seeing the business go from strength to strength under the new ownership of Mr Davies and wish him all the best for the future.

“The market remains strong for well established businesses in South Wales. 2018 has proven to be one of our busiest years in relation to completions within the region, and we are seeing no slowdown in the market to date.”

The Nag’s Head was sold off a guide price of £495,000 for the freehold interest.

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