Arthur Collins, the ex-boyfriend of The Only Way Is Essex’s Ferne McCann, has been sentenced to 20 years in prison after being arrested following an acid attack at East London nightclub Mangle E8, in Dalston.
The sentencing judge labelled McCann’s ex as an ‘accomplished liar’ before sentencing him to 20 years for an attack which left club goers scarred for life.
Collins’ lawyer told the court his brash, hot-headed actions were a ‘stupid little mistake’ and he ‘feels as if the entire world has turned against him’.
The judge at Wood Green Crown Court read a letter which expressed his regret for the actions he made, which left innocent bystanders in the East London venue scarred on 17 April of this year, reports The Sun.
During the trial, his lawyer, George Carter-Stephenson QC, claimed a confrontation at the club had escalated ‘very rapidly’.
It’s a stupid, thoughtless reaction and one which Mr Collins now bitterly regrets.
However, Judge Noel Lucas QC felt giving him a 20-year sentence, with an extended five years on licence, was more than justified as he branded Collins ‘an accomplished and calculating liar’ who’s not even ‘demonstrated the slightest remorse’.
Judge Lucas further pointed out Collins had only said sorry once during his 90-minute mitigation and sighted ‘his so-called apology’ as ‘meaningless’.
Victims of Collins’ attack were present at his sentence, one of whom was Phoebe Georgiou, who was celebrating her 23rd Birthday the night the attack took place.
In a statement read out to the court she said:
I mourn the old Phoebe. I grieve for her every day. You couldn’t find a shred of human decency to admit what you had done.
I have been given a life sentence by you.
Another victim, 22-year-old Sophie Hall, broke down when she came face to face with her attacker, telling him she knew she would be ‘scarred for life’ after he inadvertently hurled the acid into her face.
I knew my face was a mess. I could feel it in my hands.
It was all blistered.
Her friend Lauren Trent added how Hall’s birthday will ‘now be an anniversary of the attack’:
You changed not only my life, my best friend’s life, my family, my friends and your life.
But you don’t know what it feels like to have acid thrown at you – the pain, what It feels like to have acid burn your skin.
It was 1.45am in the morning, that’s the time my parents received a phone call from me.
Imagine that phone call was your daughter on her 22nd birthday and you were stuck two hours away in your home town.
She tells you her skin is coming off in her hands from her neck. All she can see in the bathroom is people screaming.
Collins had been out that night celebrating the news his ex-girlfriend Ferne was pregnant with their baby daughter.
He admitted to throwing the liquid but did not know it was acid, claiming in court he snatched it from two men, as he thought it was a date rape drug and had overheard them planning to spike a girl’s drink.
However, the jury didn’t believe him and gave a guilty verdict.
Collins was convicted of grievous bodily harm with intent and nine counts of actual bodily harm on 14 victims.