A 70-YEAR-OLD man is today starting a 10-year prison sentence for scarring another man’s face for life by repeatedly slashing him with a Stanley knife.

Terence Sullivan accused another regular at the Burns Hotel in Market Street, York, of being a paedophile.

When he was asked not to do so, he went up behind the victim - who had been acquitted several years ago of sex offence charges - and launched the attack, York Crown Court heard.

He slashed the unarmed man at least six times.

“It was a terrifying incident,” Judge Paul Worsley QC told him. “It was unprovoked, it was in a public place where other people were simply having a quiet drink.”

Sullivan, of Vine Street, off Bishopthorpe Road, York, denied wounding with intent but was convicted by a jury after nearly five hours deliberation.

The jury acquitted him of having an offensive weapon in public after the judge told them they could do so if they decided Sullivan had a reasonable excuse to have it with him.

The victim was acquitted of sexual offences by a separate jury several years before the incident on February 17, 2016.

“It seems you harboured some suspicions in your mind, and it is clear you ignored him whenever you met. It is a great misfortune that didn’t continue on February 17,” the judge told Sullivan.

He said the victim had asked Sullivan to stop calling him a paedophile after a third man said he wouldn’t talk to him because Sullivan had called him a paedophile.

“You decided you were not going to take this rebuke,” the judge told Sullivan.

The victim was in his sixties, perhaps slightly overweight and no match for Sullivan, even without a weapon, the judge said.

Sullivan inflicted life changing injuries on the victim in six slashing wounds that left him with a scarred face.

“After you had done that, you expressed no regret. You did nothing to see how serious (the victim) was. You left the premises,” the judge said.

Defence barrister John Dunning said Sullivan would find jail harder than a younger man would.

The judge accepted Sullivan had not laid in wait for the victim.

After the verdicts, the judge criticised the delay in the case coming to trial.

Anthony Moore, prosecuting, told him the case had been listed for trial twice, on March 6, 2017, and October 12, 2017, but on each occasion, other trials had taken priority on the day.

The judge said: “I am troubled by the fact it has taken the case so long to come to trial.”

He said he knew there were lots of cases needing court space but, he continued: “This was a serious matter. I hope cases as serious as this will not take as long as two years to come to court in future.”

Mr Moore also told him police had to wait for forensic and medical evidence before interviewing Sullivan in April 2016 and sending the case to the CPS to decide whether to charge.

The CPS took until July to make a decision and Sullivan was charged when he answered bail on August 1, 2016. His first court appearance was before York Magistrates' Court on September 1, 2016.