A man who launched a terrifying text campaign of threats against his former partner in a bid to stop her giving evidence against him has been jailed.
Craig Bent sent one text which said “I will dig your grave for you.”
He told her “it’s game over” and said men had been paid to go to her home to attack her.
It was “a proper job”, he said, adding: “Trust me.”
Mold Crown Court heard the terrified victim received another text which read: “I swear I am going to get petrol and pour it over you, and watch you burn.”
Bent told her he wanted to “hurt you so much” and added: “Watch what I do to you – I will ruin your life.”
She was warned not to turn up to give evidence and he wrote “big snitches get big stitches.”
A judge was told his fear campaign worked and his former partner was so terrified she did not turn up at the local magistrates court to give evidence against him on a charge of domestic assault.
He was found not guilty.
But the text campaign then continued, David Mainstone, prosecuting, told Mold Crown Court yesterday.
Bent, 26, of Palmer Street, Wrexham, was jailed for 15 months after he admitted perverting the course of justice and harassment.
Judge Niclas Parry said they were “menacing threats of violence against a vulnerable woman on the eve of your trial.”
They had left her terrified and she feared real violence would be inflicted upon her.
“You left her in no doubt that men had been paid to harm her and that she should not feel safe if you were imprisoned.”
The judge said the administration of justice was “utterly frustrated” by the Bent’s “controlling, bullying and menacing “ text messages.
His campaign lasted 36 hours, during which she was threatened with very serious violence.
Perverting the course of justice in such circumstances struck at the very heart of the criminal justice system, Judge Parry said.
“Witnesses must feel protected,” he said.
“Domestic violence of that kind would simply not be tolerated.”
An indefinite restraining order was made under which he must not approach his former partner or enter Ffordd Gwynedd, Rhos, or a road where her mother lives in Marchwiel.
The court heard that the couple had been in a three year relationship and had a daughter.
They split up in June of this year after he was said to have assaulted her by throwing a television set at her and punching her in the face.
He was charged and a trial in the local magistrates court was due in August, but she did not turn up to give evidence after the menacing texts were sent to her.
Brian Treadwell, defending, told the court the texts were deplorable, controlling and bullying.
“He knows what he has done is wrong and criminal and that consequences will follow,” he said.
Access to his child had been the source of much of his anger and that had since been sorted out.