Bouncer in brawl with footballers 'was unlicensed'

A bouncer who was temporarily blinded after being hit with a bottle allegedly by a professional footballer was working illegally at the nightclub where he was injured, a court was told yesterday.

Trevor Thirlwall, who suffered deep cuts around his left eye in a fight involving the Chelsea defender John Terry and two fellow players, was not licensed to work as a doorman at the members-only club in Knightsbridge, London. The claim was made by the lawyer for Mr Terry, 21, who is accused of wounding Mr Thirlwall with intent to cause grievous bodily harm at the Wellington Club in January.

The "disgraceful and violent" brawl was alleged to have been started by Mr Terry, his team-mate Jody Morris, 23, and the Wimbledon defender Des Byrne, 22, when they were ejected from the venue.

The three men, who deny a joint charge of affray, are accused of harassing staff and customers during a drinking session at the club. Mr Morris, an England Under-21 player with Mr Terry, who denies the charge, is said to have taunted Mr Thirlwall, 28, citing how much he earned and threatening to have him sacked.

But Desmond de Silva, for Mr Terry, told Middlesex Guildhall Crown Court in London that the doorman had not been authorised by the local authority to work that night.

Cross-examining Sasha Keegan, the manager of the basement bar, Mr de Silva said: "Many people may not realise this, but a doorman at a nightclub such as yours has got to be registered with Westminster City Council. It's a criminal offence for someone to act as a doorman who has not been so licensed. On this night ... Mr Thirlwall was not licensed."

Mr Thirlwall, who was with two colleagues when the footballers were ejected from the club, said that Mr Terry had lunged at him in an alleyway.

The doorman told the court: "I felt the sheer weight of a blunt object ... and it absolutely shattered my eye and cheekbone. My eye exploded in blood ... I have never ever experienced the pain of being hit like that." The case continues.

Start your day with The Independent, sign up for daily news emails
  • Get to the point
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?

Day In a Page

NHS struggling to monitor the safety and efficacy of its services outsourced to private providers

Who's monitoring the outsourced NHS services?

A report finds that private firms are not being properly assessed for their quality of care
Zac Goldsmith: 'I'll trigger a by-election over Heathrow'

Zac Goldsmith: 'I'll trigger a by-election over Heathrow'

The Tory MP said he did not want to stand again unless his party's manifesto ruled out a third runway. But he's doing so. Watch this space
How do Greek voters feel about Syriza's backtracking on its anti-austerity pledge?

How do Greeks feel about Syriza?

Five voters from different backgrounds tell us what they expect from Syriza's charismatic leader Alexis Tsipras
From Iraq to Libya and Syria: The wars that come back to haunt us

The wars that come back to haunt us

David Cameron should not escape blame for his role in conflicts that are still raging, argues Patrick Cockburn
Sam Baker and Lauren Laverne: Too busy to surf? Head to The Pool

Too busy to surf? Head to The Pool

A new website is trying to declutter the internet to help busy women. Holly Williams meets the founders
Heston Blumenthal to cook up a spice odyssey for British astronaut manning the International Space Station

UK's Major Tum to blast off on a spice odyssey

Nothing but the best for British astronaut as chef Heston Blumenthal cooks up his rations
John Harrison's 'longitude' clock sets new record - 300 years on

‘Longitude’ clock sets new record - 300 years on

Greenwich horologists celebrate as it keeps to within a second of real time over a 100-day test
Fears in the US of being outgunned in the vital propaganda wars by Russia, China - and even Isis - have prompted a rethink on overseas broadcasters

Let the propaganda wars begin - again

'Accurate, objective, comprehensive': that was Voice of America's creed, but now its masters want it to promote US policy, reports Rupert Cornwell
Why Japan's incredible long-distance runners will never win the London Marathon

Japan's incredible long-distance runners

Every year, Japanese long-distance runners post some of the world's fastest times – yet, come next weekend, not a single elite competitor from the country will be at the London Marathon
Why does Tom Drury remain the greatest writer you've never heard of?

Tom Drury: The quiet American

His debut was considered one of the finest novels of the past 50 years, and he is every bit the equal of his contemporaries, Jonathan Franzen, Dave Eggers and David Foster Wallace
You should judge a person by how they peel a potato

You should judge a person by how they peel a potato

Dave Hax's domestic tips are reminiscent of George Orwell's tea routine. The world might need revolution, but we like to sweat the small stuff, says DJ Taylor
Beige is back: The drab car colours of the 1970s are proving popular again

Beige to the future

Flares and flounce are back on catwalks but a revival in ’70s car paintjobs was a stack-heeled step too far – until now
Bill Granger recipes: Our chef's dishes highlight the delicate essence of fresh cheeses

Bill Granger cooks with fresh cheeses

More delicate on the palate, milder, fresh cheeses can also be kinder to the waistline
Aston Villa vs Liverpool: 'This FA Cup run has been wonderful,' says veteran Shay Given

Shay Given: 'This FA Cup run has been wonderful'

The Villa keeper has been overlooked for a long time and has unhappy memories of the national stadium – but he is savouring his chance to play at Wembley
Timeless drama of Championship race in league of its own - Michael Calvin

Michael Calvin's Last Word

Timeless drama of Championship race in league of its own