Llandeilo tractor driver given suspended jail sentence

A Llandeilo farmer who drove his tractor at high speed towards his ex-wife has been given a suspended prison sentence.

Llanelli magistrates were today (Thursday), shown video footage of Thomas Evans driving his tractor directly towards Ms Maria Osbourne-Evans.

A cement mixer had been placed on the front fork which was pointing downwards.

Evans, 59, of Esgairdawe, Llandeilo, was found guilty of assault by beating during a trial on March 24.

He was also found guilty of breaching a non-molestation order and a restraining order which had previously been imposed by family courts and criminal courts complex.

Crown Prosecutor Ms Nia Sturgess told magistrates that on the morning of July 5, 2021, Evans had received permission from his ex-wife’s solicitor to attend the farmyard in order to remove machinery which he required for cutting sileage.

Ms Osbourne, accompanied by a friend, had already unlocked the barn in preparation of his arrival and both women stood some 35 meters away, enabling them to ensure that the correct machinery was being removed.

Suddenly Evans drove his tractor into the yard but instead of turning around, he drove directly towards his wife. Contact was made with her upper front arm.

Ms Sturgess told magistrates that Evans had been convicted of a similar offence in November, 2020, atter he was found guilty of driving his tractor at his son.

In a statement read out to the court, Ms Osbourne-Evans said she feels permanently scared.

“Things seem to be escalating and I don’t know where it’s going to end,” she said.

“I only feel that I’m existing and getting through the day. I feel just as much a prisoner now as when I was living with him and this is the very first worry I have when I wake up every morning.”

Meanwhile Evans’ solicitor, Ms Kathryn Lane, said her client ‘struggles with anger management control and a lack of consequential thinking’.

Ms Lane added that all his offences are the result of an on-going financial dispute between Evans and his former wife.

“They ran the farm as husband and wife but also as business partners until December 2020, but then things started to go downhill,” she said. “This was when the civil and criminal courts had to intervene.”

Magistrates imposed a 20 week custodial sentence on Evans, suspended for 24 months.

He was also ordered to pay £620 costs, £200 compensation to Maria Osbourne-Evans and a £128 victim surcharge. He must also carry out 80 hours of unpaid work.

Further restraining orders were imposed against his family.

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