A Saundersfoot man who punched another man so hard he fell into a coma he may never recover from has been cleared this afternoon (Friday) of inflicting grievous bodily harm with intent.

But James Robert Toulouse, aged 24, of Bonvilles Close, was told by a judge he would still go to jail as he had already admitted causing Rory Robert Rogers gbh, but without intent.

Jason McReynolds, 20, of Ridgeway Close, Saundersfoot, was told he would also go to jail after the jury at Swansea crown court found him guilty of attempting to pervert the course of justice.

McReynolds had helped Toulouse to leave the scene before police could arrest him, and also made an untrue statement to police about how left the area.

The jury had heard how trouble began after Mr Rogers’ friend, Luke Wallis, told Toulouse in the Deck bar that if he was hard enough he could hit him in the face as hard as he wanted to, which he did.

Mr Rogers and Toulouse exchanged words and as Mr Rogers left the pub Toulouse ran at him and punched him to his head, knocking him unconscious.

Toulouse said he had acted in self defence and had not kicked Mr Rogers, as the prosecution had alleged.

Toulouse will be sentenced at Carmarthen crown court next Thursday.

McReynolds, who had been on bail, was remanded in custody and will be sentenced on April 24 after a probation officer has prepared a report into his background.

Judge Paul Thomas said both would receive custodial sentences, it was only a question of how long.

Judge Thomas described the case as “awful for all involved” and he expressed his sympathy for the position that Mr Rogers’ family found themselves in.

The jury had been told during the trial that Mr Rogers was still in a coma at Neath Port Talbot hospital, almost five months after the attack, and may never recover.