Kate’s uncle Gary ‘must stay away from wife he punched’
THE Duchess of Cambridge’s uncle is facing a restraining order to keep away from his wife after he admitted knocking her out in a drunken brawl.
Gary Goldsmith hit Julie-Ann with a powerful left hook which sent her crashing on to the pavement after the pair had spent the evening drinking during a charity auction at a private members’ club, a court heard.
The millionaire businessman, who is the younger brother of Kate’s mother Carole Middleton, pleaded guilty to assault by beating. He was granted bail until the sentencing hearing next week, with the conditions he does not contact his wife or visit their central London home.
The move by a prosecutor to impose a restraining order suggests the marriage is over, although Mrs Goldsmith, 47, was photographed just days ago wearing what appeared to be a wedding ring as she walked her dogs.
Details of the attack were outlined at Westminster Magistrates’ Court as Goldsmith, 52, sat in the dock. Taxi driver Daniel Shepherd told police that the couple began arguing on their way home from a charity auction at Home House, a private members’ club in central London, on October 13. After getting out of the cab, Mrs Goldsmith slapped her husband on the face and he punched her.
Mr Shepherd said Mrs Goldsmith was ‘unconscious and not moving’ on the ground. She remained with her eyes closed for about 15 seconds before waking up and staggering to her feet.
Prosecutor Kate Shilton said: ‘Both parties are drunk. [Mrs Goldsmith] cannot recall how it happened but her husband has punched her in the face with a closed fist.’
Mr Shepherd said he confronted Goldsmith and said: ‘Mate, you cannot do that.’ When Goldsmith turned towards him in an aggressive manner, the taxi driver added: ‘What are you going to do, start on me now?’ Mrs Goldsmith asked the driver to call police and she was taken to hospital by ambulance. Photographs of her injuries were shown to the court revealing a bruise on her cheek, a grazed elbow and scratches to the fingers on her right hand.
Goldsmith, who made a fortune worth an estimated £30million from his recruitment business, is often described as the ‘black sheep’ of Kate’s family. He was exposed in a tabloid newspaper story in 2009 in which he was shown preparing cocaine at his Ibiza villa – nicknamed La Maison de Bang Bang – and boasting of his connections with the royal family. He married Julie-Ann, his fourth wife, in 2012.
A police officer who interviewed Goldsmith said he had apologised and was ‘humbled by what he had done,’ the court heard.
Assault by beating carries a maximum penalty of six months imprisonment, but chief magistrate Emma Arbuthnot said she was looking to impose a community order. She added: ‘I am really looking at how to protect this lady from this man. There may be alcohol issues – they were both very drunk.’
Brawl: Gary Goldsmith at court yesterday
Attack: Julie-Ann was left unconscious