Page last updated at 11:20 GMT, Monday, 18 May 2009 12:20 UK

'Discipline' father's crop attack

Cardiff Crown Court
The man was also found guilty of common assault on his wife

A father who horsewhipped his three children for discipline and to stop them "going off the rails" has been jailed at Cardiff Crown Court.

The man, who cannot be named for legal reasons, claimed he used a riding crop on the children "for their own good".

The Vale of Glamorgan father, 52 and described as a devout Christian, was convicted of three cruelty charges and of twice assaulting his partner.

He was jailed for 27 months and called a "controlling bully" by the judge.

Judge Stephen Hopkins QC said he was cruel and added that by pleading not guilty and making the children give evidence against him, he had effectively called them liars..

The qualified engineer, who gave up his career to study divinity, was arrested when his seven-year-old son dialled 999 after an incident at the family home.

At a previous hearing, one of his children told the court when his father hit him it felt "like his hand was on fire" and always left a mark.

'Bend to modern society'

He said: "If I wouldn't get ready for bed dad hit me on the hand with the horsewhip quite hard. It made me feel sad."

Another said: "He would say go and get ready for bed and we began walking very slowly to get ready then he would hit you with the horsewhip."

The children were hit if they were late for a meal, were slow coming home after playing outside or even if they held a salt cellar wrongly.

The father said: "I used it as a deterrent. I'm trying to instil discipline to the children. I don't wish for them to go off the rails.

"I'm actively trying to be a good father, to bring them up knowing right and wrong."

He added he wanted to instil discipline, but children liked to "run free from parental control".

He said he never used it when angry.

When asked if he thought using the riding crop was acceptable he said: "I suppose I have to bend to modern society and say I shouldn't use it."

The father was found guilty in April of three charges of cruelty to a person under 16.

He was also convicted of causing actual bodily harm and common assault on his wife who is 20 years his junior.

Print Sponsor

Child whipping father facing jail
22 Apr 09 |  South East Wales
Father 'caned children with crop'
20 Apr 09 |  South West Wales

Has China's housing bubble burst?
How the world's oldest clove tree defied an empire
Why Royal Ballet principal Sergei Polunin quit


Sign in

BBC navigation

Copyright © 2019 BBC. The BBC is not responsible for the content of external sites. Read more.

This page is best viewed in an up-to-date web browser with style sheets (CSS) enabled. While you will be able to view the content of this page in your current browser, you will not be able to get the full visual experience. Please consider upgrading your browser software or enabling style sheets (CSS) if you are able to do so.

Americas Africa Europe Middle East South Asia Asia Pacific