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Kentish Town man pleads guilty to attack on Sun journalist

PUBLISHED: 12:19 09 November 2015 | UPDATED: 12:19 09 November 2015

Gary Carter was found with a serious head injury outside Bethnal Green station. Picture: Twitter

Gary Carter was found with a serious head injury outside Bethnal Green station. Picture: Twitter

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A 35-year-old man from Kentish Town has pleaded guilty to GBH after attacking a journalist and leaving him in a critical condition.

James Flanagan, of Marsden Street, was arrested and charged on the same day of the assault which occurred outside Bethnal Green station on Friday shortly before 1am.

Gary Carter, a freelance rugby league reporter who works for The Sun newspaper, had been punched and knocked to the floor by Flanagan. He struck his head on the pavement and suffered serious head injuries.

Mr Carter, 36, remains in critical condition at a hospital in east London. His wife tweeted: “Pray for my husband #rflfamily.”

Mr Carter was said to have travelled down to London from Manchester on Thursday to report on Saturday’s England vs New Zealand rugby league game at the Olympic Stadium.

A number of well-wishers have sent messages of support, including ex-footballer Alan Shearer who tweeted: “Best wishes to @garyCarter_1979 for a full recovery after suffering an awful attack last week.”

Following England’s defeat to New Zealand, national coach Steve McNamara said: “The England team sends its best wishes to him and his family and hope he makes a full and speedy recovery.”

Flanagan, who pleaded guilty to GBH at Thames Magistrates’ Court on Saturday, was bailed and will be sentenced on November 24 at Snaresbrook Crown Court.

A 22-year-old man was arrested in relation to the incident for affray towards attending ambulance crew. He was further arrested on suspicion of conspiracy to commit GBH on Saturday. He has since been bailed for both offences to a date in late November.

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