A VIOLENT EDL thug who slashed a man’s throat has been convicted of murdering a Bradford grandfather.
A jury of seven men and five women has returned its unanimous verdict following a two-week trial at Bradford Crown Court.
Clement ‘Butch’ Desmier, 68, was murdered at his home in Rowlestone Rise, Greengates, on August 23, 2012.
Today, his family said the death and what he must have suffered in his final moments would haunt them forever.
During the trial, forensic pathologist Dr Christopher Johnson said the cause of death was multiple injuries, including stab wounds.
Dr Johnson said it was highly likely Mr Desmier’s injuries – which included 60 penetrative puncture wounds to his body from a screwdriver and a single typical knife stab wound to his abdomen – were inflicted while he was sat in his armchair, in the front room of his home.
Killer David Lawler, formerly of Central Avenue, Shipley, was also today found guilty of two counts of intimidation, relating to a witness who gave evidence.
The 33-year-old, who was wearing a grey suit, pale blue shirt and blue spotted tie, showed no emotion as the verdicts were given, but there were cries of ‘yes’ from the public gallery.
Co-accused Nathan Jefferson, 20, of Springwell View, Holbeck, Leeds, admitted the murder charge before the start of the trial.
Mr Justice Blake said both men would be sentenced on Wednesday, March 23.
Earlier in the trial Lawler had admitted to the jury that he was an EDL thug who had also slit a man’s throat, but denied the murder.
“Butch was well known in his local community and should have been celebrating his 72nd birthday this month with family and friends.
“I hope that the successful conclusion of this case today will finally provide Butch’s family and friends with some closure to what has been a very traumatic time for them.”
A statement from the Desmier family, said: “Today sees the end of a three and a half year agonising wait to identify those responsible for the brutal murder of our father.
“The loss of our father has had a devastating impact on our lives. The fact that he was a vulnerable old age pensioner, viciously attacked in his own home with weapons, will haunt us all for the rest of our lives.
“Two ruthless individuals with no regard for life ripped our lives apart that day and we will never recover from that.
“We would like to praise the brave individuals that came forward and provided information to the police investigation about Lawler and Jefferson’s involvement. Their courage assisted with the conviction of these two individuals which will hopefully allow our father to finally rest in peace.
“We would also like to thank West Yorkshire Police for their unrelenting determination to bring those responsible to justice. They have been an immense support to our family throughout this difficult time. They never gave up and for that we will be forever grateful.”