A taxi driver has lost his sight in one eye after a man smashed him in the face with a metal pole and ruptured his eyeball. Taxi driver, Ali Begzada, had to have surgery following the attack but was told by doctors he will never regain the sight in his left eye and can no longer work to support his family.
In a victim statement read out at Cardiff Crown Court, Begzada said: “I am in pain 24 hours a day." His attacker Noor Hussain denied charges of grievous bodily harm but was found guilty following a trial. The incident took place on the evening of May 28 last year in Tudor Street in Riverside, Cardiff when Mr Begzada was standing by his taxi with a friend outside a kebab shop, when a group of boys riding bikes.
The court heard that one of the boys stayed outside with the bikes while the others went into the shop. It was heard in court that some bikes had gone missing from the home of one of the defendant’s friends and they went out to look for them.
As reported in the Wales Online, prosecutors said the men thought the bikes outside the kebab shop were the stolen ones and went to confront the boy.
The court heard that Mr Begzada saw the child was frightened and decided to intervene. As Hussain returned to his car he attacked Begzada and smashed him around the face with a metal pole. Describing the pain, Mr Begzada said it felt “like an electric shock” and said he could not remember much about the incident. Prosecutors said he was “completely in shock”.
People began to gather around the scene which promoted Hussain to put the pole back in the car. He was subsequently arrested and chose to not answer any questions in his police interview.
The court heard Hussain effectively “ruptured” the victim’s eyeball, blinding him in one eye. After hours of surgery, the consultant told Mr Begzada there was nothing more they could do to save his vision and would be permanently blind in that eye. The victim said his left eye used to be his stronger eye and the vision in his right has deteriorated further since the incident. “My life has completely changed since the day I was assaulted,” said Mr Begzada.
He said he has always worked hard and does not want to claim benefits but has struggled financially since the incident. Mr Begzada described himself as a prisoner in his own home saying he is no longer able to work or socialise due to his injuries. “I get tired all the time,” he said. “At night the pain gets worse and I cannot sleep. My legs feel like they are melting. My doctor told me that is due to the head injury.” The court heard he cannot use the bathroom alone as he suffers from blackouts and has to ask friends to help him.
“I am trying my best to be strong,” he added. “But I just do not know what to do. I am now completely blind in my left eye and my doctor told me this will never improve.” Hussain, 42, from Grangetown , grew up in Bangladesh and his barrister John Ryan said he was working hard to send money to his family there. Mr Ryan said his client had no previous convictions and drew the judge’s attention to a number of positive character references. He argued the attack was not premeditated, adding: “It was a fast-moving incident that was over in a second.” In her sentencing remarks, Judge Tracey Lloyd-Clarke said: “The consequences of that one blow for Mr Begzada have been devastating. “You have caused this man permanent disability. He did nothing to bring this upon himself.” Hussain was jailed for 10 years and must serve half of that in custody before being released on licence.
Image: Source; South Wales Police