A GANG hunted down a boy before breaking his cheekbone in a “vicious” assault in the grounds of a Gwent rugby club.

Some of the mob had arrived in the Rhymney area of Caerphilly on mopeds, prosecutor Bethan Evans told Cardiff Crown Court.

The victim, who cannot be named because of his age, was kicked and punched during the unprovoked attack.

His assailants had tried to run him over as he attempted to flee from them before they caught up with him at Rhymney RFC’s War Memorial Park.

Among his attackers was Jack Challoner, aged 18, of Merthyr Road, Rhymney Bridge, Llechryd, Caerphilly.

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He pleaded guilty to causing grievous bodily harm with the offence taking place on Saturday, June 4, 2022.

“The victim had made his escape by running away into the war memorial park but he was chased and cut off,” Miss Evans said.

“This defendant kicked him to the back and stomach and the complainant curled himself up into a ball.”

The victim was taken to Prince Charles Hospital in Merthyr Tydfil where he underwent surgery for a fractured left cheekbone and he also needed stitches.

“This was a vicious attack which appears to have been unprovoked,” the prosecutor added.

“The complainant could not provide any explanation as to why it had occurred.

“He said in his impact victim statement, ‘I won’t go out with my friends anymore and I’m constantly looking over my shoulder.’”

Jenny Yeo, representing the defendant, said in mitigation that her client, a father, had no previous convictions.

She added that he was not among those who had tried to run the boy down on mopeds when he was pursued.

Judge Eugene Egan told Challoner: “You should be thoroughly ashamed of yourself.

“This was entirely wrong and entirely unjustified.”

The defendant was sent to a young offender institution for 12 months but that sentence was suspended for 21 months.

He was ordered to carry out 180 hours of unpaid work, complete a five-day rehabilitation activity requirement and ordered to pay £500 compensation.

A co-defendant who is 17 and who cannot be named because of his age is due to be sentenced next week after he also admitted causing the victim grievous bodily harm.