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Polish men Pawel Bartoszuk and Martin Szelag jailed after two men in Canterbury had burning liquid squirted in their eyes

12 December 2013
by Joe Walker

Two men were attacked with a burning spray in Canterbury

Two men were attacked with a burning spray in Canterbury

A thug who squirted a burning liquid into the eyes of two men and then watched as his pal kicked one of them unconscious has been jailed.

Pawel Bartoszuk, 20, used what is believed to have been pepper spray in the unprovoked attacks in Canterbury city centre. 

Both victims were walking home from pubs and clubs when they were attacked with the chemical substance - which is normally used by police to restrain violent criminals.

Canterbury Crown Court court heard Polish national Bartoszuk - who arrived in Kent in June - was with a group of friends on September 1 when he launched the attacks. 

In the first, at 3.30am, he approached a 28-year-old man who was walking alone through St Peter's Street. 

He pulled the spray from his pocket and squirted the chemical into the man's eyes.

Just 30 minutes later, he used the same canister to attack a 22-year-old man in the High Street.

As the distressed victim was trying to clear his eyes, Bartoszuk's friend Martin Szelag punched and kicked him in the head, leaving him unconscious on the ground.

Both men were arrested and later identified carrying out the assaults on CCTV. 

Bartoszuk was jailed for nine months having previously pleaded guilty to two counts of assault. 

Szelag, 19, also from Poland, was jailed in October for his role in the second attack. He pleaded guilty to assault and was also sentenced to nine months. 

Man sprayed and kicked unconscious in Canterbury High Street

A man was sprayed and kicked unconscious in Canterbury High Street

DC Lee Gerken said: "These were entirely unprovoked attacks on two men who were simply making their way home after a night out.

"Bartoszuk disposed of the canister after the assaults and even though tests on the victims’ clothing were unable to precisely confirm the substance which was sprayed, the sentence he has received sends out a message that we will pursue anyone who uses or is in possession of an offensive weapon.

"Violence on our streets will not be tolerated."

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