Builder with broken English refuses lawyer and without interpreter somehow admits he punched bouncer in 2017

A builder who punched a bouncer in the face appeared in court without a lawyer or interpreter and had to have the word ‘guilty’ explained to him.

‘You do not want to be represented, is that correct?’ The legal advisor asked

‘No’ answered Deliu, seemingly in confirmation.

‘Sir are you happy to proceed?’ the legal advisor asked District Judge Timothy Godfrey, who confirmed he was.

Spiro Deliu, 21, who spoke broken and limited English, admitted assaulting Richard Butler on 19 August 2017.

He was arrested yesterday and appeared at Wimbledon Magistrates’ Court via video link from Plumstead police station in south east London.

When the charge was first read to him he didn’t answer, when encouraged to answer guilty or not guilty he replied ‘I don’t know what you are saying’

After an off-screen custody officer explained this meant he had or had not committed the crime, he hesitantly said ‘I didn’t’.

Prosecutor Maxine McDaniel was asked by DJ Godfrey to read the allegations out in full.

She said: ‘He went to speak to his friend outside a nightclub, when the bouncer came to speak to you it is said that you punched him on the side of his head.’

Deliu began to say ‘yeah, because…’ then paused, ‘I’m pleading guilty, yeah’.

In police interview Deliu apologised to police for the incident but told them it was self-defence, a claim the police contested after viewing the CCTV footage and calling him the ‘aggressor’, the court heard.

‘What they are saying is that the video is not consistent with you acting in self-defence,’ said DJ Godfrey.

‘Are you guilty or not guilty?’

Deliu looked to his off-screen police custody officer, who again explained what guilty or not guilty meant.

‘Guilty’ Deliu said slightly more firmly.

‘You assaulted a man who was doing his job, essentially a service for the public,’ DJ Godfrey told him.

‘He didn’t respect me first,’ Deliu replied in mitigation.

Deliu was first required to appear at Wimbledon Magistrates’ Court in October 2017 but had failed to attend on a number of occasions, claiming he ‘didn’t know’ he was required to attend due to changes of address..

The builder claimed he earned £250 a week doing construction work when he could find it.

Deliu, 21, of Fontley Way, Roehampton, was fined £85, ordered to pay £100 compensation to Mr Butler and a victim surcharge of £30.

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