Mahmoud Shrara, 21, was arrested in connection with an attack on two men in Peterborough city centre in the early hours of 2 September 2018.
The 38-year-old victim was walking with a friend towards Broadway from Cattle Market Road at about 12.40am when they engaged in conversation with Shrara and two other men.
For unknown reasons, an argument broke out between the group, resulting in the victim being hit over the head with a brick by Shrara, before the victim’s friend was struck with what is believed to have been a belt.
The victim was left lying on the ground, unconscious, but was tended to by members of the public until paramedics arrived.
He was taken to Addenbrooke’s Hospital in Cambridge for emergency surgery on his fractured skull as well as bleeding and swelling on his brain and, after undergoing extensive surgery, was placed in an induced coma for more than a week to allow his recovery.
The other man suffered minor injuries as a result of being struck by Shrara.
The same night, police arrested a 16-year-old boy in connection with the assault and an 18-year-old man was arrested the following day. The pair remained under investigation for many months but were eventually released with no further action being taken against them.
Almost two weeks later, on 15 September, after having been identified as the main suspect, Shrara was spotted on CCTV in Broadway near to O’Neill’s bar and arrested. Upon searching him he was found to be in possession of a lock knife and class A drugs.
He was later released from police custody pending further investigation, but on 23 August last year (2019) he was summonsed to appear at court on 19 September charged with assault causing grievous bodily harm (GBH) with intent, possession of a knife in a public place and possession of cocaine.
He denied the charges and was bailed by magistrates to appear at Peterborough Crown Court for trial the following month.
On 3 October, ahead of his trial, Shrara was arrested by the Community Action Team in Millfield after officers saw what they believed was a drug deal.
Officers approached Shrara in St Martin’s Street but as they identified themselves as police, he made off, discarding a cling film package containing 33 wraps of crack cocaine and 11 wraps of heroin, valued at £10 per wrap.
The officers caught up with him and found him to be in possession of £250 cash and two mobile phones, resulting in his arrest on suspicion of drug dealing.
The following day he was charged with possession with intent to supply heroin and crack cocaine and was remanded to appear in court the next day. He again denied the charges against him but was remanded in custody ahead of trials for both the assault and the more recent drug charges.
Shrara, of Eastfield Road in Peterborough, changed his pleas in relation to the assault and admitted a lesser offence of assault causing grievous bodily harm (GBH) without intent, as well as three additional charges of possession of an offensive weapon in a public place, assault causing actual bodily harm (ABH) and affray.
On Wednesday (25 November), Shrara was found guilty of two counts of possession with intent to supply class A drugs; heroin and crack cocaine, following a three-day trial.
Today (Friday 27 November), he appeared at Cambridge Crown Court where he was sentenced to a total of four years and three months in prison.
DC Robin Gray said: “Shrara is clearly a dangerous individual who has got himself involved in serious criminality at a young age.
“Even though he may not have intended to cause serious harm to his victim, this could have been a very different story had he of not made the recovery that he did.”