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January, 17

Rapper Dappy facing jail over fight

Rapper Dappy facing jail over fight

Dappy is facing a jail sentence after being found guilty of assault and affray for starting a fight at a petrol station after he was "disrespected" by two women.

A jury at Guildford Crown Court found the 25-year-old N-Dubz singer spat at a man who stepped in to protect the two 19-year-olds with whom Dappy had started arguing after they rejected his advances.

The trial was told that Dappy became angry, sparking the brawl, after the teenagers "dissed him" and called him boring.

The jury took eight and a half hours to find Dappy guilty of affray and assault by beating. Co-defendant Kieran Vassell, 25, was also found guilty of affray, while Kalonji Stewart, 32, was found not guilty of the same offence. A fourth man, Alfred Miller, 28, has previously pleaded guilty to affray.

Judge Neil Stewart adjourned proceedings until February 15 for pre-sentence reports to be prepared on Dappy and Vassell. Dappy faces a maximum sentence of three years' imprisonment for affray and six months for assault by beating.

The nine-day trial heard that Dappy, charged under his real name of Costadinos Contostavlos, had been out on February 27 last year celebrating the release of his single Rockstar featuring Queen guitarist Brian May. After spending the night in the VIP area of the Casino nightclub in Guildford, Surrey, the group stopped at a Shell garage on the way back to recording studios in Godalming where Dappy was working on his debut solo album.

Brian Stork, prosecuting, claimed that Dappy approached the two teenagers, Grace Cochran and Serena Burton, who were sitting on the kerb outside the station shop, and tried to persuade them to get into the car with him to continue the party at the studios.

The court was told that when they refused these advances and began to ridicule him, Dappy became angry and called them sluts. He told the court: "They had shown me disrespect, a lot."

However, Dappy denied swearing and spitting at them and was found not guilty of two charges of common assault in relation to the spitting. Mr Stork said a man called David Jenkins stepped in to protect them but was spat at by Dappy. This spitting, which hit Mr Jenkins, made up the charge of assault by beating of which Dappy was convicted.

The court heard that Mr Jenkins put Dappy in a headlock, leading to several other people joining in the fight, including the two other defendants.

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