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Car buyer threatened to ‘execute’ car dealer over vehicle break-down

Court

A car buyer threatened to “execute” a car dealer in a string of racist and threatening text messages after his Mini Cooper S broke down, leaving him stranded at the roadside on the day he bought it.

Michael Bailey (35), of Llangyfelach Road, Brynhyfryd, Swansea, bought the used car from salesman Amin Shafi remotely after agreeing a price over the phone and taking a test drive upon delivery in July last year.

Later that same day a campaign of text-based abuse began after Bailey contacted the retailer, who sells his vehicles online and at a secure industrial estate in Cardiff, to tell him that the hatchback had overheated – leaving him stranded.

Ashanti-Jade Walton, prosecuting in a hearing at Swansea Crown Court, said Shafi received a series of further abusive and racist text messages, Wales Online reported.

She said that Mr Shafi had already arranged for the vehicle to be recovered and told the defendant a collection had been organised and that the police were being contacted over his threatening tone prior to receiving further text messages.

One message to Mr Safi said: "Don't want it resolved, I want your **** head on a plate”.

Bailey said in his text messages that he was stranded in England by the breakdown, away from his terminally-ill mother who was in Wales, adding: “If I don't get back to see her in time, I will execute you and your family.”

Days later, further text messages were sent with a threatening tone, the court heard.

Bailey admitted his offences in a police interview back in October and told officers he had "got himself worked up" at a time when his mother was seriously ill with cervical cancer.

He later pleaded guilty to a count of racially aggravated harassment with fear of violence between July 28, 2021 and August 4, 2021.

Andrew Evans, mitigating, said in court that his client was “not seeking to make any excuses for his behaviour”. He added: “It is something he is deeply ashamed of.”

Judge Geraint Walters sentenced Bailey to a four-month prison sentence, suspended for a year, alongside a 20-day rehabilitation activity requirement and 150 hours of unpaid work.

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