Boxer jailed for murder of young soldier in Brecon fails to have term reduced

Credit: Wales News Service

A boxer who boasted he was the "hardest man in town" before punching a young soldier to death failed in a bid to have his jail term reduced.

Jake Vallely, 25, was convicted of murder in December last year for killing soldier Mathew Boyd, 20, outside a pub in Brecon, Powys.

Vallely chased Private Boyd through a street before punching him to death as he lay on the floor.

He was jailed for life and told he must serve a minimum of 16 years.

But Vallely - who denied murder - appealed against the length of his sentence saying the attack wasn't pre-meditated.

However an appeal judge said Vallely was thrown out of several pubs in Brecon and threatened to rape a woman before coming across Pte Boyd.

His barrister, Peter Rouch, QC, said: "Whatever happened earlier on in the evening did not amount to violence or even an attempt at violence.

"He did not use or demonstrate violence to anyone else before the incident."

Private Matthew Boyd served with the Royal Gibraltar Regiment Credit: Wales News Service

The appeal was heard before Lord Justice Simon, Mr Justice Holgate and Sir John Griffith-Williams at Cardiff Crown Court.

Lord Justice Simon said: "The sentencing judge considered Vallely's intentions that night, and despite the ferociousness he could not be sure he intended to kill.

"There was no violence earlier that evening and when confronted Vallely was compliant.

"That may be the case but the judge was entitled to conclude that he had been aggressive and confrontational all evening.

"He made threats to rape a woman with whom he was arguing with and threatened to kill her boyfriend.

"The applicant's state of mind is not a matter of mitigation - the application is dismissed."