Weeping company director, 35, is told ‘get used to life being different’ as a magistrate jails him for kicking an Uber driver in the head despite his pleas it will ruin his firm

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By Joseph Curtis For Mailonline

A company director wept in court as he was jailed for kicking an Uber driver in the head outside an exclusive London club.

Robert Croucher, 35, begged to be spared a prison sentence and told a magistrate jail ‘would destroy his life and his firm’.

But he was told to ‘get used to life being different’ as he was sent down for his violent attack on cabbie Mohammad Hussain.

Croucher, managing director of business consultancy Hatton & Berkeley, was convicted of assault by beating at Hammersmith Magistrates Court after attacking Mr Hussain outside Raffles club in King’s Road, Chelsea, when he refused to drive him and his partner Briggitte Kudor home.

Crying, he told the court: ‘This will destroy my life, I am the director of a company, and everyone would lose their jobs.

‘We have 1,000 clients, we have staff all around the country, and it would die.’

But magistrate Sandra Blandford was unimpressed and snapped: ‘Your behaviour was unacceptable.

‘We find that you did kick Mr Mohammad Hussain a number of times while he was on the floor, and one of those kicks was to the head.

She added: ‘You’ll just have to get used to his life being different.’

The court heard Mr Hussain feared driving Croucher after the latter ‘suddenly became angry’.

He said: ‘I refused because I got scared because the gentlemen suddenly got angry, something happened between them and he harshly slammed the door.

‘I got out to open the door, and then the gentlemen took the keys from through the window. He then slapped me.

‘I was begging for my keys and he suddenly pushed me on the pavement. He has just kicked me in several parts of my body and head.

‘My head was very swollen, I went to hospital where I stayed for four hours. I went to my GP a few days later and got prescribed antibiotics, it was severe pain.’

Magistrates were shown footage of the incident recorded by a member of staff at Raffles, where Croucher was seen slapping Mr Hussain, insulting members of staff and then throwing the driver’s keys down the street.

In the footage he is shown running after Mr Hussain before there is an altercation, and the cameraman is then seen running after Croucher and restraining him.

Kristoff Kwiecien, one of the doormen who also restrained Croucher, told magistrates he had held him down as the kicking was ‘too much.’

He said: ‘Mr Croucher put him on the floor and kicked him in the head. It was three-to-five times. The first kick was loud, like a clap.’

Mr Kwiecien told magistrates Croucher had a conversation with the doormen before the incident, and had threatened to have them fired.

‘He was very rude. He said he had built four flats in Mayfair, and I could lose my job tomorrow.’
Croucher insisted he only slapped the driver but the magistrates found he had kicked him in the head.

Ms Blandford told weeping Croucher: ‘The CCTV evidence was compelling. We saw the slap, and the security guards saying call the police.

‘We saw the urgency in which they ran over shouting no need to kick him in the head.’

She added: ‘This is a very serious offence, only a custodial sentence can be justified.’

Croucher, of Hornsey, north London, admitted assault by beating, but denied kicking Mr Hussain.

The businessman was jailed for 20 weeks, ordered to pay £620 costs, a £115 victim surcharge, and pay Hussain £500 in compensation.

Raffles was founded in 1967, and counts Barbara Streisand among former guests.

It has also been visited by Royals including the Queen, Prince Charles and Princess Anne.

The exclusive club accepts members on a referral only basis, and has welcomed politicians, celebrities as well as Royals.

 

 

 

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