Court told of man’s ‘kidnap’ ordeal

A MAN from Banwell was held at knifepoint in his own home, tied up and taken in a car to Bath, a court has heard.

Chaten Patel told Bristol Crown Court how he was ‘kidnapped’ on July 8 last year in connection with an alleged armed robbery carried out by three men in Worle.

He said that during the alleged kidnapping, he had his hands and ankles tied for more than 14 hours as he was first held hostage in his home, and then driven to a flat in Bath, where the police found him.

Mr Patel, speaking behind a screen, told the court that he was co-owner of Rhino Trading, an internet-based company selling hemp seeds, with Mike Dransfield, one of the allegers of the alleged robbery.

Mr Dransfield was one of four men who claim they were robbed at the home in Mead Vale in March 2010, and Mr Patel claimed that he was kidnapped so the gang could get in contact with Mr Dransfield, who they wanted money and cannabis off.

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Three men, Arfan Hussain, Leon Duncan and Jamie Veira, deny charges of conspiracy to rob, having a firearm with intent and possessing a prohibited firearm.

Another man, Alexander Fillingham, has admitted the robbing charge but denied the other two, while a fifth man, Ashley Pritchard, has pleaded guilty to two of the charges.

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Marissa Campbell has pleaded not guilty to false imprisonment relating to Mr Patel’s alleged kidnapping. Only Campbell and Hussain were in court to hear the evidence.

Mr Patel said that he had answered his front door, only to be confronted by a man wearing a balaclava and carrying a “huge” knife, who tied both his ankles and wrists up.

After waiting throughout the night at his home, he was bundled in the back of his own Mitsubishi Evolution, and driven first to Bristol, and then to a flat in Bath.

He said he was then taken to the flat’s bathroom, still tied up, and was told by his captor “this will be your home for a few days”, hours before police officers burst in and freed him.

The case continues.

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