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Summary

  1. Billy and Geoffrey Midmore jailed for acid attack in Southampton
  2. Billy gets 15 years in prison while his brother is jailed for nine years
  3. The pair were convicted of throwing acid in Carla Whitlock's face
  4. Geoffrey, 27, admitted GBH with intent while Billy, 23, was found guilty
  5. Mother-of-six Carla Whitlock was left blind in one eye following the attack last year

Live Reporting

By Marcus White

All times stated are UK

  1. 'Committed to stamping out incidents like this'

    Video content

    Video caption: Police committed to pursuing acid attack brothers

    Chief Inspector Debra Masson said: “Acid attacks in Hampshire are thankfully very rare. The level of injury caused by such an attack is life-changing, and I know that Carla still faces many challenges, alongside the permanent loss of sight in one of her eyes, due to this barbaric act.

    “This was a premeditated assault carried out by two men of violence who regularly came to Hampshire to pursue a criminal enterprise, and make people’s lives a misery.

    “The evidence shown in court of their behaviour directly after the attack, coupled with their concerted efforts to evade capture, served to expose them as the dangerous criminals they are.

    “Although things will never be the same for Carla, we hope that the sentence handed to Geoffrey and Billy Midmore today goes some way to giving her closure and allows her to feel that justice has been delivered.” 

  2. 'It's quite a sad life'

    Victim Carla Whitlock spoke to the BBC following Billy Midmore's conviction. This is what she had to say.

    Video content

    Video caption: Acid attack victim left with 'sad life'
  3. Brothers jailed

    Billy Midmore, 23, has been sentenced to 15 years in prison, of which he will serve at least 10 years. He has also been given five further years on licence. 

    Geoffrey Midmore, 27, has been sentenced to nine years in prison, and will serve at least half of that. When he is released, he will also be on licence and subject to supervision.

    Billy and Geoffrey Midmore
    Image caption: Billy and Geoffrey Midmore
  4. BreakingGeoffrey sentenced

    Judge tells Geoffrey Midmore: "You were the follower but you threw the acid. You decanted acid into a plain bottle then went back out no doubt hoping to bump into Carla. You pleaded guilty, expressed remorse."

    Geoffrey is sentenced to nine years in prison. 

    Geoffrey impassive. Stares at brother. No conversation between them.

  5. Breaking'You are dangerous'

    The judge tells Billy Midmore: "You are dangerous and the public needs to be protected."

    He is sentenced to 15 years in addition to supervision on license for five years. He is told he will serve at least two thirds of the sentence.

    Billy Midmore laughs.

  6. A predilection for violence

    "Billy has a predilection for violence to get his way," says the judge.

    "In this case you were more the leader than the follower. It was your drugs business and you made the threat to Carla. 

    "I have read your pre-sentence report where you said 'I love violence in every form'."

  7. Judge's remarks continue

    "I bear in mind Geoffrey's remorse, but it can't overlook the fact you got into easy money of drug dealing." 

  8. 'A higher level of culpability'

    "Billy sent Carla a text message saying she was 'dead' as a threat. 

    "You bought the drain cleaner because you intended to pour it in her face. 

    "To describe it as the 'face melter' could only have one interpretation. This is a category one offence, involving a higher level of culpability."

  9. 'Medieval barbarism'

    The judge continues: 

    "The doctors' swift action was important in saving some of Carla's sight. 

    "She will have to live with consequences for the rest of her life.

    "The psychological damage is difficult to assess. Your behaviour displays a level of medieval barbarism that is appalling. 

    "You used a weapon that was pernicious and evil. You planned for this which adds to the culpability."

  10. BreakingJudge remarks

    The judge addresses the brothers.

    "The drugs trade frequently involves threats of violence. This was a cruel and calculated attack intended to cause serious injury and disfigurement. It was a punishment attack. 

    "Carla was left blinded in one eye with her remaining vision damage. Her eyelids don't close properly so she will probably suffer recurring infection."

  11. Defence speeches concluded

    The defence speeches have finished, and the judge is beginning to speak.

  12. Uncontrollable weeping

    In police interviews, Billy smiled and laughed throughout, while Geoffrey broke down, weeping uncontrollably, saying "I can't believe what I have done to a woman", when he first met his barrister, the court hears/

    Geoffrey appears impassive in the dock, his hands clasped in front of his mouth.

  13. 'Mad, bad, sad thing'

    When he discovered through social media he might have blinded Carla, Geoffrey began to struggle, says his defence barrister.

    "I've done a mad bad sad thing...what have I done" Geoffrey wrote on Facebook.

  14. Toes curl

    Mr Pawson continues: "Remorse is a word that trips off barristers' lips. But Geoffrey can be shown to have felt genuine empathy and bitter regret for the consequences to his victim. 

    "There are photos which make one's toes curl of fist bumping and high fives. At that point he had no idea of the gravity of the injury he had just caused."

  15. 'More of a follower'

    Geoffrey is "more of a follower than a leader," claims his defence. 

    "He was told by his brother to say nothing and the result of his heinous behaviour went beyond his intention. He did not think he would blind another human being," it is added.

  16. Geoffrey's defence begins

    Rob Pawson, defending for older brother, Geoffrey, said: "However ghastly this almost unspeakable offence is, it his wholly out of character. 

    "His only previous conviction travelling on train without a ticket. A devoted family man, he lost his job 2014 and has coached a children's football team. 

    He has a son aged six-years-old and pursued contact with him despite break-up with partner, pursuing access through the courts."

  17. 'Plan for the future'

    Billy Midmore's barrister is pleading for a determinate sentence, so his client can plan for the future.

  18. Let out 'by mistake'

    High Down prison let Billy Midmore out by mistake, it is claimed.

    "He could have disappeared but he didn't, he attended a probation appointment and was arrested the following day which is to his credit," says his defence barrister.

  19. Billy Midmore's defence continues

    Mr Ruffell says offending started when Billy was just 13 years-old. 

    When aged 16, in 2010, he was put in custody and was 'effectively' in custody for four-and-a-half years until age of 21. 

    The effect on his outlook and his "ineptness" in understanding the human condition is because of custody, claims the defence barrister. 

    Mr Ruffell said: "[Billy] tells me he is tired of what he has been involved in."