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Joey Barton accused of 'grabbing wife by throat and kicking her in the head' in new trial


Ex-footballer Joey Barton will face a fresh criminal trial over allegations of assaulting his wife, Georgia Barton. This follows a High Court ruling after a previous halt in proceedings.

The accusations centre on an alleged drunken row, which Mr Barton denies. He was all set to go on trial at a magistrates’ court in 2022.

Nonetheless, the case was briefly paused after Mrs Barton wrote to prosecutors retracting her claim. A judge consequently declared a hiatus in proceedings, citing worries about an unjust attempt to try Mr Barton, especially after officials stated they had no plans to put Mrs Barton on the witness stand.

Stephen Parkinson, the Director of Public Prosecutions (DPP), opposed this decision at the High Court in London. Lawyers argued before the hearing last month that a fair trial could resume.

On Friday, two senior judges agreed with the DPP, stating the case against Mr Barton should proceed under a different judge. Dame Victoria Sharp said in a 20-page judgement that the previous decision “was wrong in principle”, reports MyLondon.

The former footballer was accused of grabbing his wife by the neck and kicking her head during a quarrel outside their Kew home, south-west London, in June 2021. Subsequent to his arrest at his residence, he denied a count of assault by beating.

Despite this, it is reported that a golf ball-sized bruise was left on Mrs Barton’s forehead alongside a bleeding nose.

However, in March 2022, Wimbledon Magistrates’ Court heard that Mrs Barton had written to prosecutors a month before the scheduled trial, claiming her injuries were accidental, resulting from friends intervening in an argument between the couple after they had consumed “four or five bottles of wine”.

Mrs Barton did not back the prosecution and was not expected to be called as a witness for the prosecution during the trial due to concerns she would provide a dishonest account of the events.

Mr Barton’s legal team argued this would put him at a disadvantage as it meant she could not be questioned about inconsistencies in her evidence.

Nonetheless, Dame Victoria stated that the prosecution is only required to call witnesses who have provided statements they intend to rely on, and it was not “an abuse of process” to refrain from calling Mrs Barton.

She added: “In the circumstances of this case, it would have been appropriate for the defence to have called Mrs Barton, and for the prosecution to have cross-examined her.”

The judge, sitting with Mr Justice Saini, noted that Mrs Barton had never provided a witness statement and had also “expressed an unwillingness from the outset to give evidence against her husband”.

Dame Victoria concluded: “No prejudice could conceivably have been caused to Mr Barton if Mrs Barton had been called by the defence, or by the court for that matter.”

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