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Golders Green father blinded in one eye during vicious iPad mugging

PUBLISHED: 16:44 26 March 2012 | UPDATED: 18:28 26 March 2012

Placide Kamwiziku admitted grievous bodily harm

Placide Kamwiziku admitted grievous bodily harm

Archant

A financial consultant from Golders Green told a court how his life unravelled after he was blinded in one eye during a vicious mugging for his iPad.

The 37-year-old father, who did not wish to be identified, was left worried for his survival after muggers attacked him as he walked home from a night out on January 13.

Placide Kamwizku, 18, and Kembo Digonda, 21, smashed the financial consultant over the head with a plank of wood to steal his iPad, Wood Green Crown Court heard on Monday (March 26).

As he turned to face the muggers, he was brought to his knees by another blow from Kamwiziku, which fractured his cheekbone and smashed his glasses into his face, rupturing his right eye.

A violent struggle ensued as Kamwiziku and Didonga grabbed the man’s designer shoulder bag and tore the strap from his grasp.

He was left bloodied on the ground in The Ridgeway, Golders Green, where the court heard the muggers had deliberately laid in wait for a vulnerable victim.

The financial consultant described the devastating impact the attack has had on his life.

“My right eye is completely damaged and doctors say I will almost certainly remain blind in this eye forever,” he said in a statement to the court.

“I would have given up my property - this has changed my life forever and changed the life of my family.

“I am no longer able to drive or do any of the activities I previously enjoyed.

“I am not able to work and am worried about how I will survive.”

His attackers were caught by police using a tracking device on the iPad to locate them at West Hampstead train station.

Kamwizku, from Streamside Close in Edmonton, and Digonda, of no fixed address, were jailed for a total of 24 years.

They both admitted grievous bodily harm and robbery.

Jailing Kamwiziku for 14 years and Didonga for 10 years, Mr Recorder Nigel Peters QC said: “You have brought great shame and disgrace on your family and your names, because what you did was some of the worst conduct I, in this court, have come across.

“You have effectively destroyed this man’s career, family and life expectations.

“He was a young man who was full of life, but he is very far from that now.”

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