Belfast Telegraph

Sunday 31 August 2014

Bez to appeal assault conviction

Mark Berry will appear in court to appeal against his conviction for assault on his ex-girlfriend

Former Happy Mondays star Bez is back in court to appeal against his conviction for assault on his ex-girlfriend.

He was jailed for four weeks in August after the row over money with his ex.

Bez, real name Mark Berry, accused the mother of his two-year-old son of stealing his cash and flew into a rage as he put his hands round her neck and throttled her, Manchester Magistrates' Court heard.

He was convicted after a trial and originally given a community order and asked to pay £450 in costs.

But he told chair of the magistrates' bench Marie Cash that he would not obey the sentence, and protested his innocence.

In response, Ms Cash told the former Celebrity Big Brother winner he was going to jail for one month. He was promptly handcuffed and taken down to the cells to start his sentence.

His former partner Monica Ward had told the court that he was "looking insane" as he squeezed her neck and kicked down a door.

The defendant claimed he was acting in self-defence in the incident at their flat in Whalley Range, Manchester, on May 24.

He was also convicted of using unlawful violence to gain entry into their home.

Bez, who found fame for his freaky dancing in the Happy Mondays in the 1980s, said he was upset because he could not find the takings from a concert the night before. His appeal against his conviction and the sentence will be heard before a judge at Manchester Crown Court later on Friday.

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