A MAN from Gwynedd guilty of the manslaughter of his father has been sentenced to an indefinite hospital order.

Tony Thomas, 46, of Penrhyn Isaf, Minffordd, Penrhyndeudraeth, had been accused of killing Dafydd Thomas, 65, on a track near his home on March 25, 2021.

He had pleaded not guilty to both murder and manslaughter, but at Mold Crown Court on January 26, the jury returned a unanimous guilty verdict regarding the latter.

At Caernarfon Crown Court today (February 24), Thomas was handed a hospital order, as well as a restriction order.


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The restriction order means that Thomas can only be discharged from hospital if the Secretary of State for Justice agrees.

At last month’s trial, which lasted two weeks, the court had heard the relationship between Thomas and his father had been deteriorating for some time prior to his death.

He had been in dispute with his father, who lived roughly 500 yards away from him, regarding the ownership of his home and the keeping of pigs.

Thomas had previously accepted inflicting unlawful violence on his father, who had not long retired after being a director of Gwynedd Environmental Waste Services Limited, and had turned more of his attention towards farming.

An email sent to Thomas from Agriculture and Horticulture Development Board on March 25, 2021 notified him of pig movements, which he believed his father was responsible for.

This “angered” Thomas, who said he had been trying to eradicate disease from the pigs he bred, and was concerned that his father bringing in his own pigs would jeopardise this.

After stopping his father while he was about to return home in his pickup truck, Thomas admitted stamping on him once but denied punching him at all.

He described his attack as a “reflex action” with “no intention”, and lasting “10 to 15 seconds”.

Thomas said that he was “overwhelmed with anger” and felt “like a fuse (was) blowing in my head”.

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But he held his stepmother, Elizabeth, responsible for his death, alleging that she kicked him to the head after he had left the scene and made his way home.

A provisional cause of death was given as inhalation of blood due to severe blunt trauma facial injuries, and Thomas was arrested at roughly 3.30pm that day.

The court had also heard from three consultant forensic psychologists during the trial; one of whom, Dr Yasir Kasmi, said Thomas was suffering from schizoaffective disorder at the time of his father’s death.

Dr Kasmi, based at The Spinney mental health service in Manchester, interviewed Thomas on four occasions, and believed he was “unable to exercise self-control or form rational judgment”.

He said Thomas called his father a “narcissist” to him, that he had “no positive memories” of him and described the abuse he inflicted on him as “so subtle”.

Thomas has also been diagnosed with bipolar disorder, with Dr Kasmi adding that he has previously held grandiose ideas about himself and struggled to sleep properly.

He had also claimed he had invented a COVID-19 vaccine five years before the onset of the coronavirus pandemic in 2020.

He told Dr Kasmi that he had upcoming appointments on the matter with Dr Chris Whitty, chief medical officer for England and chief medical adviser to the UK Government.

Thomas was initially remanded in HMP Berwyn following his father’s death, but was later moved to The Spinney.

He also said he had seen papers saying his father wanted him to kill him so that he would go to prison.

A victim statement was read out at today’s sentencing in person by Dafydd Thomas’ daughter, Elin (the defendant’s stepsister).

Knowing that her stepbrother will not be in her or her family’s vicinity, she said, gives her a “great sense of relief”.

Defending, Gordon Aspden KC said both a hospital and restriction order would “reflect the fact that this was a killing as a result of severe mental illness”.

Mr Aspden added: “This court can have dealt with few cases that are as sad, desolate and melancholic as this.

“It’s clear that a very fine man’s life was ended needlessly by his own son, who had suffered long-standing and chronic mental illness for the best part of 25 years.”

Dr Andrew Shepherd, a forensic psychologist, also supported the imposition of such orders.

He said: “Given the beliefs Mr Thomas has shared as to the reasons why he confronted his father, to me, this speaks to evidence of mental disorder at the time, and can be seen to have led to disinhibition or anger on Mr Thomas’ part.

“I would argue he retains a low level of responsibility… if we set aside his illness, I believe malice would have been markedly reduced.

“I believe he will require a significant period of time in hospital.”

Sentencing, Judge Rhys Rowlands said he believed Thomas had “very limited insight” into the extent of his mental illness at the time of his father’s death.

He labelled Thomas’ attack on a “thoroughly decent and much-loved family man” as “sustained”, “brutal”, “inexplicable” and “entirely irrational”.

Judge Rowlands told Thomas: “You would not have committed this truly dreadful crime if not for your mental illness.”