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Tuesday, 1 May, 2001, 15:28 GMT 16:28 UK
Hansen's ex-lover 'lost a litre of blood'
Chris Cotter
Chris Cotter allegedly staged an attack on himself
The former boyfriend of international triple-jumper Ashia Hansen lost more than a litre of blood after he was stabbed in an alleged race-hate attack, a court has been told.

Chris Cotter was in shock and bleeding heavily on the steps of Ms Hansen's home, a paramedic told Birmingham Crown Court.

Mr Cotter, 29, a financial adviser who lives in Plymouth, is accused of faking the attack to win back Ms Hansen's affections and to sell his story to a tabloid newspaper for 6,000.

Ashia Hansen leaving court
Ashia Hansen found Mr Cotter bleeding on her doorstep
He, along with Surjit Singh Clair, 31, from Walsall, and Craig Wynn, 29, from Birmingham, deny conspiring to pervert the course of justice and attempting to obtain money by deception by selling the story to The Express.

The alleged attack took place on 21 March last year outside the athlete's home in Erdington, Birmingham.

Mr Cotter sustained three wounds to his back and a deep gash to his head and spent 36 hours in hospital.

Paramedic Frederick Allen told the court how he attempted to stem the flow of blood from Mr Cotter's head as he was taken by ambulance to hospital.

Mr Allen said he estimated that Mr Cotter lost a litre, or a fifth of the blood in his body, during the attack.

Three wounds

He also said he overheard a conversation which Mr Cotter had with a police officer who accompanied him to hospital.

"He said he was parking his car and some people attacked him from behind," said Mr Allen.

"I believe then the WPC asked if anything was asked by his assailants, to which Mr Cotter said `where's the bitch, where's the bitch'.

"I believe shortly afterwards she asked him what colour the assailants were and he said white."

Surjit Singh Clair
Mr Clair: Accused of fabricating racist letters

Mr Cotter has alleged that he was attacked by racists who were angry at his relationship with Ms Hansen.

After the attack she, along with several other black athletes and an MP, received hate mail.

The prosecution allege that the letters to sprinter Dwain Chambers, high jumper Ben Challenger and Olympic heptathlete champion Denise Lewis were fabricated by Mr Clair.

Ms Hansen, who lived with Mr Cotter for three years, holds the Commonwealth Games gold medal, the World Indoor Championships title, and the World Indoor record.

However, her performance at the Sydney Olympics last year was disappointing because of injury and because of the stress of the attack, she has claimed.

The case continues.

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