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Security guard found guilty of killing shoplifter

Marks and Spencer security guard Sabeur Trabelsi, 44, has been convicted of manslaughter and perverting the course of justice after killing shoplifter Jason Page.

Trabelsi is facing a long jail sentence after he was found guilty, on May 4th at Reading Crown Court, of killing a shoplifter he suspected of stealing meat.

The jury took just four hours of deliberation today to convict Sabeur Trabelsi of manslaughter.

They had earlier heard how the security guard, 44, landed a “knockout blow” to the head of homeless Jason Page outside the supermarket in Lower Earley, Reading, Berkshire, on March 31 last year.

After he was arrested, father-of-three Trabelsi tried to claim that 51-year-old Mr Page fell over because he was drunk and that was why he hit his head.

He denied throwing a punch at him.

However, CCTV footage seen by the jury showed otherwise and they convicted him of manslaughter and perverting the course of justice.

The conviction means the guard, who was not employed by M&S and supplied to the store on temporary basis by a third part security company, could be jailed for up to eight years.

The jury of eight men and four women heard that the fatal punch happened on Trabelsi’s last working day for the store.

He had been hired to work at the supermarket after a spate of thefts of expensive meat and alcohol.

Store manager, Elliot Cripps, who followed Trabelsi out of the shop as he chased Mr Page, was cleared of perverting the course of justice and walked free from Reading Crown Court.

During the prosecution summing up of the case, it was revealed that Trabelsi, from Kings Road, Reading, had told police in one of several interviews: “I was frustrated, I know I shouldn’t have done it.”

Summing up the prosecution case, Mr Ward-Jackson told jurors: “He (Trabelsi) had pent-up anger. He was angry and wound up, or to use his words – frustrated.”

He said his revelation to police was a “rare moment” where he revealed the reason for his crime.

“Which is anger or frustration and if that is right, this is not a case of self-defence but a blow committed on the spur of the moment aimed in anger,” he said.

The same point was made by some security professionals, who, while discussing the case, said: “The violence in this news item highlights the frustration and total lack of grip we all have on a well-known problem, it’s not just ‘the police response’ which is at fault.”

Judge Amjad Nawaz rejected a plea by Trabelsi’s defence counsel for him to be granted bail “to put his affairs in order” before being jailed and he was sent straight to the cells.

He will be detained at Bullingdon Prison in Bicester pending sentencing on June 12.

(Source: Mirror)

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