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Wife's fury as judge allows sword attacker to walk free

PUBLISHED: 15:18 27 August 2009 | UPDATED: 16:24 07 September 2010

Josie Hinton THE wife of an estate agent attacked by his millionaire neighbour with a samurai sword outside their Marylebone home has spoken of her disgust after his assailant walked free. Property developer Simon Carson, 58, flew into a rage and confro

Josie Hinton

THE wife of an estate agent attacked by his millionaire neighbour with a samurai sword outside their Marylebone home has spoken of her "disgust" after his assailant walked free.

Property developer Simon Carson, 58, flew into a rage and confronted neighbour Simon Korn with the £30,000 antique sword following an ongoing feud over noisy building works.

The 58-year-old estate agent's hand was badly sliced after the scuffle outside his Mansfield Street flat on October 26 last year.

His wife Madeleine was also repeatedly slapped by Carson's wife Freddie Booker-Carson, 57, an award-wining art curator.

Speaking to the Wood&Vale, Dr Korn, also an art historian, said she felt cheated by a system which allowed the pair to walk free.

Both attackers were spared jail after admitting assault - with Carson receiving a one-year suspended sentence and Booker-Carson an absolute discharge.

Dr Korn said: "It's one law for the rich and one for the poor. If Carson was living in a council flat and unable to afford a top QC he would be in prison, no doubt about it. As soon as they pleaded guilty we were unable to tell the real story as it happened. In our courts, once someone pleads guilty, witnesses and defendants are silenced.

"Mr Carson carried out a very deliberate and costly victimisation of us and despite countless evidence of this it feels as if he has come out on top.

"The fact that he has walked free, and while walking away has given a 'thumbs up' sign to the court, is a little hard to swallow."

Mr Korn described the attack as his "worst nightmare coming to life."

He said: "I feel disgusted. I feel the judge has fallen for their story.

"They treated us with contempt, and don't realise the seriousness of what they've done. I'm going to have pain in my wrist for the rest of my life."

The incident occurred after months of feuding between the two couples when the Korns, who lived above the Carsons, began renovating their flat.

The couples made regular complaints about one another and Carson was prosecuted by Westminster Council in April for playing loud music at 3.30am. He did not attend the hearing and was fined £175 in his absence.

Dr Korn said: "We limited the noise as much as possible, but we were renting somewhere at the time and wanted to get the work done as quickly as possible.

"We had permission from the managing agents and the residents association and listed building consent from Westminster Council. But he ignored that and repeatedly tried to get an injunction against us.

"When that failed he came at us with his sword."

Carson, an ambassador for charity Action Aid, received a one-year jail term suspended for two years after he pleaded guilty at Southwark Crown Court to causing actual bodily harm .

Booker-Carson, a board member for various charities, was given an absolute discharge after admitting common assault.

Sentencing the pair, Judge Gregory Stone QC said: "I have regard to the impeccable character which you can proclaim and I have regard to the public service which you provide in the arts you perform."

He ordered the sword to be auctioned off and the money split between the warring neighbours' chosen charities.


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