A NEWPORT man is starting a life sentence today after a "sustained and brutal" attack on a Polish baker, who suffered injuries that were among the worst a judge has seen.
In handing 26-year-old Gavin Mills a minimum prison term of 12 and a half years, Judge Mr Justice Griffith Williams described the "ferocious" kicks and stamps, that left shoe marks on 60-year-old Jerzy Dubiniec's clothing and chest.
Mills, of Glebe Street, Newport, yesterday (Tuesday) pleaded guilty to the murder of Mr Dubiniec on the second day of his trial at the city's Crown Court.
The court had heard on Monday how Mills repeatedly kicked, butted, punched and jumped on the body of Mr Dubiniec as he lay on the road, before stopping to take his pulse and then continuing the assault The judge said the reasons will probably never be known why Mills attacked Mr Dubiniec after he bumped into him on Broad Street, Newport, at 3.30am on August 20 2011.
Mr Dubiniec was heading home to St Michael's Street after a shift in a local bakery, while Mills had left a party at Blacks Pool Hall.
The judge concluded something happened to upset Mills, causing him to leave the party and under the influence of drink and cocaine, he attacked Mr Dubiniec, whom he chanced upon in the street.
He said: "What followed was a sustained and brutal attack lasting many minutes with fist and boot on an elderly man who was quickly overpowered and defenceless."
He added: "You beat him so he fell to the ground and then kicked and stamped him so ferociously that there were shoe marks on his clothing as well as his chest."
While a passing car ran over Mr Dubiniec's legs, this was found to have not contributed to his death.
A post mortem examination found he died from blunt injury to face, jaw and chest, with Judge Williams saying "you clearly intended to kill him" and described the list of fractures to the victimÕs skull, face, ribs and sternum as some of the worst he's seen.
He said Mills' claims he remembered nothing of the attack were contradicted by the fact he disposed of his shoes and tried to avoid arrest.
Mills must serve a minimum 12 and a half years before being considered for parole as part of a life sentence. He was also on trial after denying causing grievous bodily harm with intent to Benjamin Davies on the same day as the murder of Mr Dubiniec.
But, after his guilty plea to murder, prosecutor Gregg Taylor QC asked that charge lie on the file.
BEFORE Mills was sentenced, prosecutor Mr Taylor finished the opening of the case, outlining some of the horrific details.
He said when paramedic Lindsay Brown arrived, she was unable to grip Mr Dubiniec's jaw to check his airwaves because of his injuries.
Mr Taylor said that following the attack, Mills ran to the house of Stephen Davies on St Michael's Street.
He said: "Mr Davies opened the door to see Mills lying on the floor, with his head in his hands. He looked drunk and was saying "I've killed him, I've squashed his head and his skin's gone soft. My girlfriend Christine is around the corner crying her eyes out."
Later that morning, Mills got in a taxi to his mother's house and said "don't ask" when driver Terence Birt asked why he had no trainers.
He was arrested later that day after initially running from police and found to have cocaine in his system.
Mr Dubiniec had never left Poland before travelling to Newport last year to help out in a bakery belonging to a family friend, Mr Taylor told the court.
He left school at 16 to study bakery and confectionery and apart from a brief spell in national service, had worked in the trade all his life. Considered a master of his trade, he was much sought after in his homeland.
The married father-of-three retired in 2000 after suffering a mild heart attack, but found he missed his work.
In July 2011, he left Poland for the first time, and was described as "quite looking forward to" helping family friend Daniel Binek who had taken on Stanley Bakery, Enterprise Way, Pill.
While he spoke no English, he travelled to Gwent on a lorry carrying Polish baking goods and planned to stay for around three months overseeing the baking process, while living at Mr Binek's house.
His family were not in Newport for the case, but Judge Williams said Mr Dubiniec had been the victim of "gratuitous violence" after coming here to apply his considerable skills for the benefit of the Polish community in Gwent.
He said: "There must be considerable and continuing sympathy for those who mourn him in the Polish community here and in Poland."
THE ARGUS can reveal that killer Gavin Mills was part of a gang banned from a Newport estate in 2004 by an anti social behaviour order after terrorising his neighbours.
In January 2004, Mills and two other youths were banned from the Broadmead and Moorland Park estates in Newport, after terrorising the areas.
Then 17, Mills was handed the anti-social behaviour order after Cwmbran MagistratesÕ Court heard the three caused months of misery for people living there.
Police revealed the youths behaviour included persistently abusing residents, throwing stones, setting fires, threatening and intimidating neighbours.
Following the imposition of the two-year ASBO, PC Sally Jackson said: "We were getting three or four reports a night about their behaviour. People were genuinely scared to go out of their houses."
At Newport Crown Court yesterday (Tuesday) defence barrister Douglas Day QC said Mills also served 15 months for burglary and theft in 2009 and has in the past been cautioned for common assault and given a community order for dishonesty.
FOLLOWING the verdict, senior Crown Prosecutor David Watts said Mills was responsible for a "brutally violent attack" on a much-loved father and grandfather, who was simply going about his daily business when he was "senselessly attacked".
He added: "We cannot know for certain what motivated Mills to commit such an act - only Mills himself truly knows that. What is beyond doubt is that Mills' actions continue to have a lasting effect on Jerzy Dubiniec's family and friends. Our thoughts are with them."
Gwent Police detective superintendent Rhiannon Kirk called it a complex investigation and said hundreds of lines of enquiry were investigated to find out what happened on the night of Mr Dubiniec's death.
She said: "It was a dreadful incident that resulted in Jerzy Dubiniec losing his life in such a senseless and tragic way. It is still not clear what the motive was but what is clear is that Jerzy- an innocent, decent and hard working man - didn't deserve to die the way he did"
DS Kirk said she hopes the sentencing will bring some closure for Mr Dubiniec's family and that the forceÕs sympathies remain with them as they try to rebuild their lives.