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Chef beaten unconscious gets just £30,000 compensation

19 December 2007
Chef beaten unconscious gets just £30,000 compensation

A head chef who was beaten unconscious on the "disastrous opening night" of a Chinese restaurant in Haverfordwest today walked away with just £30,000 in compensation at London's High Court.

Fuk Wan Hau, 50, head chef at the Oriental Palace, had turned down a pre-trial offer to settle the case for £40,000, and now the legal cost implications of failing to beat that sum are likely to eat up most, if not all, of his £30,000 award.

High Court Judge Leighton Williams QC today said that Mr Hau had been set upon by a partner in the restaurant, Steven Jim, and Jim's father Shusing Jim, and "struck with kitchen implements", on the restaurant's "disastrous opening night" on 4 June 2005.

The judge added: "He fell to the floor, where the assault continued. In all, the assault lasted some 20 minutes."

The Jims admitted causing grievously bodily harm, and initially given suspended sentences by Swansea Crown Court in October 2005.

The Court of Appeal ruled in February that this punishment was "unduly lenient" and jailed them each for 26 months.

Mr Hau, who has now returned to work at the Oriental Palace restaurant into which he invested £50,000, sued the men, claiming damages for pain and suffering, ongoing medical problems, lost earnings and further "aggravated damages" to reflect the brutality of the attack.

However, Judge John Leighton Williams QC today awarded him only £30,316 in total.

The judge rejected Mr Hau's claim that the attack had caused his ongoing back pain and would force him to retire early.

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By court report

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