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Justice has been done, says family of man who lost legs in attack
A man has been jailed for 16 years for joining his uncle in a ferocious gang attack on a retired roofer whose catastrophic injuries led to him losing both legs.
Bare-chested Ladislav Balaz charged at Keith Alder, 66, who ran for his life but was caught and savagely beaten and kicked at his own front door.
Police believe Balaz, a Slovakian national, was planning to flee the country to escape justice.
In April last year, his uncle, Bartolomej Makula, was jailed for 15 years after pleading guilty to causing Mr Alder grievous bodily harm with intent and possession of a baseball bat.
Last Thursday, a jury at Bradford Crown Court convicted Balaz, of Samuel Street in Keighley, of grievous bodily harm with intent. They cleared him of having a baseball bat.
Judge Jonathan Durham Hall QC told Balaz: “The consequences on Mr Alder have been almost indescribably catastrophic.”
The court heard Mr Alder, a 17-stone gentle giant before he was brutally set upon, now had a reduced life expectancy.
He suffered two skull fractures in the assault outside his home of 40 years in Sowden Street, Great Horton, Bradford, on October 22, 2011.
The devoted family man was walking back from a charity event at his local working men’s club at about 11pm, where he was representing his wife, Kath.
After he went to the ground, Makula, 37, dealt him a sustained kicking that left him with severe internal injuries. His small bowel had to be removed and both his legs amputated.
Judge Durham Hall said the gang had “anger, vengeance and punishment” in their hearts.
After his uncle was arrested, Balaz told his mother and sister he was also involved.
When he went back on his promise to hand himself in, they shopped him to the police.
After the case, Mrs Alder and her family hugged one another with relief.
“Justice has been done. It serves him right for pleading not guilty,” Mrs Alder said.
Detective Inspector George Bardell, of Bradford South CID, said: “This was an extremely serious offence, which has had a devastating and life-changing impact on Keith Alder.
“We believe Balaz intended to flee the country to evade justice, however detectives rigorously pursued all the evidence to ensure his arrest.”