A SCAFFOLDER from Orpington has been jailed for 16 months after a vicious attack on a father and son as they tried to buy snacks at a station.

Robert McSweeney was sentenced at Blackfriars Crown Court on January 16 after pleading guilty to causing actual bodily harm (ABH) following an investigation from British Transport Police (BTP).

The court heard how McSweeney, of Poverest Road, had violently attacked the men on March 31 last year at around 9pm, as they attempted to buy crisps from the vending machine he was leaning on in London Bridge rail station.

Unprovoked, he repeatedly punched a 48-year-old father from Bexleyheath, who had recently undergone major surgery on his back, knocking him unconscious.

The victim had his front teeth knocked out and was also left with a deep facial cut that required stitches.

His 19-year-old son, also from Bexleyheath, received cuts and bruises to his face after he had tried to protect him.

Investigating officer Detective Constable Rachel Smith from BTP’s CID said: “McSweeney, who had been out drinking all day, had become violent and refused to move when the two men tried to access the vending machine on platform five.

“He punched the father to the ground, knocking him out cold. His son stepped in to shield his father from McSweeney’s continuing blows.”

The court heard how the 35-year-old scaffolder continued the violence even when the man’s son pleaded with him to stop due to his father’s recent surgery.

Police were called and McSweeney was arrested at the scene. During his interview he told officers he acted in self-defence.

DC Smith continued: “From viewing very clear CCTV footage of the attack, it is apparent that at no stage did either victim assault McSweeney in retaliation or defence.

“When shown a clip of the attack, he admitted it was not self-defence and could not explain why he acted as he did.

“This was cold and unprovoked violence on two men who were simply trying to buy snacks and I hope the sentence handed to McSweeney deters others from acting in this way. “