THIRTEEN men – including four from Sunderland – have been jailed for a mass brawl in a Durham City pub.
Chairs and glasses were thrown about the Market Tavern, in Market Place, as the Wearside group fought with men from Newcastle and Darlington.
The Sunderland men were jailed at the end of a day-long hearing at Teesside Crown Court, despite pleas from their barristers they had been targeted by the others.
Prosecutor Ros Scott Bell said the four were in the pub on a works night out when the Newcastle and Darlington men arrived.
“There was some argy-bargy and name calling before the Newcastle group were ushered from the pub,” added Mrs Scott Bell.
“They came back in a few minutes later and that is when the fight started.”
The court heard the case against the Sunderland men was built on CCTV footage.
It showed Joseph Casey punching someone and holding another man while Thomas Tansey hit him in the face.
Tansey dragged another man to the back of the pub and threw a chair.
Glen Conley threw two glasses and two chairs at the other men.
Raymond Kennedy threw three glasses.
Casey, 29, of Howick Park, Monkwearmouth, Conley, 39 of Renfrew Road, Kennedy, 45, of Helmesley Court and Tansey, 42, of Raleigh Road, all Red House, each admitted violent disorder on December 4, 2010.
Barristers for the four said they were of previous good character, in work, and had family and other commitments.
“None of this would have happened had not the other group gone back into the pub,” said Lewis Kerr for Kennedy.
The Recorder, Mr David Bradshaw, jailed each Sunderland man for 12 months.
The recorder said: “I am being urged to look at this group more favourably and I acknowledge trouble came to them, but they joined in of their own will.
“I am mindful custody will lead to job loss and difficulties for their families, but these things were not considered by the men at the time.
“The behaviour of all 13 men was disgraceful, and frightening for anyone unfortunate enough to be present.”
The nine men from Newcastle and Darlington were jailed for between six and 21 months.