A VALLEYS man robbed the shop next door to his home by attacking a shop worker with a metal bar, a court heard yesterday.

Aaron Jenkins, 23, of High Street, Fleur de Lys, was jailed for four years after admitting a single charge of robbery.

Jenkins went into the Spar Shop in High Street on June 4 and threatened shop worker Vikas Singh, 25, with a metal bar and demanded cash from the till.

Mr Singh, known affectionately as Vicky, refused, so Jenkins smashed him round the head with the bar four or five times, Cardiff Crown Court was told.

Prosecutor Gareth James said Mr Singh suffered swelling and bruising behind his left ear from the battering, but despite this still fought Jenkins off and threw a stool at him, causing him to drop the bar. Jenkins snatched the till off the top of the counter and ran off.

It is not known how much money was in the till.

After being arrested, Jenkins said he carried out the robbery at the behest of a drug dealer he owed money to, after a cheque he gave him to pay for drugs bounced.

Jenkins maintained the dealer went to his house, punched him in the face and told him if he didn’t have the money he owed, he should rob the Spar shop next door, and he gave the till to the drug dealer after fleeing the shop.

At Jenkins’ plea and case management hearing in June, a second charge of possession of an offensive weapon was dropped.

Tracey Lloyd-Nesling, for Jenkins, said her client was unable to defy the “large, threatening drug dealer” but accepts responsibility for his actions.

At the time of the robbery, Mr Singh told the Argus he recognised the robber as he had no covering over his face.

Despite being taken by ambulance to Newport’s Royal Gwent Hospital for an X-ray, Mr Singh was back in work at 9am the following day.