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Tiers Cross: Businessman narrowly escapes Christmas behind bars

Phil Stoddart: Found guilty of assault
Phil Stoddart: Electronic tag
Phil Stoddart: Electronic tag

A WELL-KNOWN businessman from Tiers Cross nearly spent Christmas in Swansea prison, after being arrested for breaching court bail.

The 48-year-old was held by police and appeared at Llanelli Magistrates’ Court on December 20 for an alleged offence under the Bail Act 1976.

Philip Stoddart, of Oakley house, had been bailed by Haverfordwest Magistrates’ Court on November 19 after pleading not guilty to a charge of assault. The  company owner, who runs Stoddart Tyres,  is due to appear at his trial later this month.

However, after police received information that the director had breached his bail, he was arrested. Llanelli Magistrates’ Court remanded Stoddart into custody. He then appeared on December 23 at Haverfordwest Magistrates’ Court via video link from prison.

At the second hearing, the bench agreed to release Stoddart in time for Christmas; but only if he adhered to strict bail conditions. The conditions are that he wears an electronic tag, is subject to a curfew between 8pm and 6am daily, does not contact a witness in the case, does not enter a particular area of Haverfordwest, and that he resides at Talbenny Hall Farm, Pembrokeshire.

At an earlier hearing, CPS prosecutor Nick Newton told the court: “This is a matter of a domestic context. He has previous convictions for common assault on a previous partner, but it dates back to 2007.”

Stoddart will appear for his trial on January 21 at 2pm.