TV star an­tiques dealer, his lover’s hus­band and a pub punch-up

Daily Mail - - News - By Liz Hull

A CELEBRITY an­tiques dealer was at­tacked by the fu­ri­ous hus­band of a woman with whom he had had an af­fair, a court heard yes­ter­day.

Busi­ness­man Janus Thomas, 47, flew into a rage and punched Drew Pritchard, who stars in the tele­vi­sion pro­gramme Sal­vage Hun­ters, when he ‘ smirked’ at him in a pub beer gar­den.

There was bad feel­ing be­tween the men af­ter Thomas’s wife, Amanda, 45, had an af­fair with Mr Pritchard, 47, who she met be­cause their teenage sons were best friends.

Mag­is­trates in Llan­dudno, north Wales, were told that the li­ai­son ended two and a half years ago when Mr Pritchard warned Mrs Thomas that their fling was about to be ex­posed.

She broke off the af­fair and con­fessed to her hus­band, who agreed to for­give his wife and give their mar­riage an­other go.

But in April this year, Mr Pritchard texted Mrs Thomas and ac­cused her hus­band of be­ing a ‘cow­ard’, the court heard.

She showed him the mes­sage and when Thomas saw Mr Pritchard in the beer gar­den of the Liver­pool Arms in Conwy, north Wales, he ‘snapped’.

Mr Pritchard told po­lice: ‘ He [Thomas] flew across the pic­nic ta­ble, he shouted some­thing that sounded threat­en­ing.

‘It caught me to­tally by sur­prise. I saw a fist com­ing to­wards my face, it caught me on the left of my head, near my ear. He was re­peat­edly com­ing at me from above with a lot of force. It caused me to fall back­wards into the door­way of the pub. I was flat on my back.’

Mr Pritchard suf­fered bruis­ing, pains in his jaw and teeth and a small cut to his el­bow.

The court heard that Mr Pritchard, who has since di­vorced wife Rebecca, 58, who co-presents the an­tiques show, was hav­ing af­fairs with other women while see­ing Mrs Thomas.

Michael Gray, de­fend­ing Thomas, said: ‘Mrs Thomas re­ceived ha­rass­ing text mes­sages from other women who had been see­ing Mr Pritchard, ac­cus­ing her of

‘He saw red, he lost con­trol’

break­ing up their re­la­tion­ships and be­ing ex­tremely hurt­ful to her.’

Mr Gray said the Thomases worked hard to re­pair their mar­riage and pro­tect their two teenage chil­dren from the fall­out.

On the night of the as­sault in July, Thomas, the man­ag­ing di­rec­tor of a suc­cess­ful crane hire com­pany, was out in Conwy when he saw Mr Pritchard.

‘Mr Pritchard smirked at him… he was laugh­ing at him, be­lit­tling him, mak­ing him feel inad­e­quate,’ Mr Gray said.

‘All of a sud­den Mr Thomas saw red. This man who had…be­trayed a fam­ily friend­ship had then smirked at him. Know­ing that he had called him a cow­ard… he lost con­trol.’

Mr Gray said Thomas, who has a pre­vi­ous con­vic­tion for as­sault, was ashamed of his be­hav­iour, but added: ‘Mr Pritchard is not with­out fault.’

Since the at­tack Mr Pritchard had sent an­other text mes­sage to Thomas, again ac­cus­ing him of be­ing a ‘cow­ard’, the lawyer said. Mr Pritchard had been warned by po­lice to stop such be­hav­iour, the court heard. Mr Pritchard’s re­quest for a re­strain­ing or­der against Thomas, who has been banned from all pubs in the area fol­low­ing the at­tack, was re­jected by JPs.

Mr Gray said of Thomas: ‘It has taken a huge amount of re­solve to get him and his wife here to­day and for that rea­son I sug­gest he has been pun­ished enough.’

He added: ‘He has been tor­mented by Mr Pritchard.’

Thomas, of Holy­well, north Wales, ad­mit­ted as­sault and threat­en­ing be­hav­iour and was fined £1,440. He was also or­dered to pay Mr Pritchard £100 com­pen­sa­tion, plus a vic­tim sur­charge of £96 and court costs of £85.

Mrs Thomas, who at­tended court and left hand-in-hand with her hus­band, was tear­ful at the end of the hear­ing.

Sal­vage Hun­ters, which is broad­cast on the Free­view chan­nel Quest, is a fly- on-the-wall- style pro­gramme which fol­lows Mr Pritchard around stately homes, old schools and fac­to­ries, buy­ing an­tiques.

As­sault charge: Janus Thomas and wife Amanda yes­ter­day SCORNED HUS­BAND AND CHEAT­ING WIFE

THE TV STAR Mul­ti­ple af­fairs: Drew Pritchard

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