Norwich man part of trio sentenced over kidnapping
- Credit: Suffolk Constabulary
A Norwich man played "a significant role" in the kidnapping and imprisonment of a man for six hours over an unpaid debt.
Ashley Stuhler, 33, of Glenmore Gardens, put his head in his hands as the jury delivered a unanimous guilty verdict before he was sentenced to three years and six months in jail.
The terrified victim in the case was said to be "unable to go out for six months without looking over his shoulder" after Dominic McArdle, Selena Parker and Stuhler forced him to get into a car and kept him in a flat in The Elms, Brandon.
It was not until police, armed with Tasers, went into the building that the man was finally freed from his ordeal - more than six hours later.
Sentencing the trio at Ipswich Crown Court after they were all found guilty by a jury of unlawfully taking the victim away against his will, Judge David Pugh said: "There was no justification for you to take the law into your own hands."
During a trial, Parker told jurors that she had been angry and upset when the victim took money out of her bank account without permission.
She admitted slapping him in the face after he admitted spending the money on drugs, but denied forcing him into her car in May last year.
Parker, 35, of High Street, Brandon, told the court the victim had said he wanted to get her money back and had willingly got into her car, so he could make telephone calls to try and get money to repay her.
Stuhler was in a relationship with Parker at the time.
He told the trial that he had been angry when he heard the victim had taken money from her bank account, leaving her without money to pay for food and electricity or support her child.
Judge Pugh said that whereas Parker only used violence once, Stuhler "played a significant role".
However, he said it was McCardle, 35, of London Road, Ipswich who "inflicted the worst violence".
Parker, who Judge Pugh said "drove the others to the original imprisonment" and whose "words and actions encouraged the others", was jailed for three years.
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McCardle was also sentenced to three years and six months in jail for his involvement in the crime.
Judge Pugh said their previous convictions aggravated the offence.