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Mum who gouged pal's face with nails avoids jail


Judge's gavel

Judge's gavel

Judge's gavel

A CARER who gouged a former friend's face with her nails and threatened to blind her has been given a three-month suspended sentence.

Sarah Nwanguma (48), a mother-of-seven, also tried to attack Augusta Okafor with a shoe, but was pulled away before she could hit her.

Ms Okafor was left bleeding and half-naked as her blouse was ripped during the assault, a court heard.

The pair, who were once close friends, were attending a women's conference in west Dublin at the time.

Nwanguma claimed Ms Okafor hit her first and she was defending herself.

Judge David McHugh suspended the sentence for a year, saying the assault had been "vicious".

Nwanguma, of Meile an Ri Crescent, Lucan, was found guilty before Blanchardstown District Court of seriously assaulting Ms Okafor at the Carlton Hotel in Tyrrelstown on December 9, 2012.

Ms Okafor had said she was standing at the entrance to the conference room when she was pushed from behind.

She claimed her blouse was grabbed and the zip and sleeve ripped.

Ms Okafor said Nwanguma then grabbed a shoe and tried to hit her.

Ms Okafor said Nwanguma walked off, leaving her half-naked.

She claimed she was "shaken" but decided to stay for the conference.

She was leaving at the end of the night when Nwanguma came over to her again and threatened to blind her and kill her.

Ms Okafor said Nwanguma grabbed her jewellery at her neck, leaving her with a scar.

She also claimed the defendant scratched her with her nails, leaving her bleeding and with bruising and scrapes to her face.

In her evidence, Nwanguma claimed Ms Okafor approached her and hit her first.

She said she was about to hit her back, but a man held her raised hand and stopped her.