independent

Thursday 17 April 2014

British aristocrat facing jail for beating wife over 22 years

Lord Edward Somerset
Lord Edward Somerset

An aristocrat from one of Britain's grandest families has been told he faces jail after admitting beating his wife over a 22-year period.

Lord Edward Somerset (55) admitted four counts of assault occasioning actual bodily harm against his wife, Lady Caroline between 1990 and 2012.

The attacks -- including biting, scratching and hair pulling -- took place on the sprawling 17th century Badminton Estate in Gloucestershire, where the couple lived.

Somerset has also admitted bruising his wife and dislocating her finger while in France.

Bristol Crown Court heard divorce proceedings between the couple are set to be finalised in the near future, following the "substantial period of domestic violence".

Judge Mark Horton is considering whether a restraining order to protect Lady Somerset from her estranged husband should be enforced.

The court was told Somerset's father, the Duke of Beaufort, told his elder son, the Marquess of Worcester to meet with Lady Somerset's cousin, Lord Raleigh.

During the meeting, it is alleged the Marquess of Worcester and Lord Raleigh discussed financial arrangements for Lady Somerset in exchange for dropping the case.

Judge Horton, who will sentence Somerset in February, told the aristocrat the offences were so serious a prison sentence could be imposed.

Irish Independent

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