It proved to be a busy year of court cases in 2023 and the Oxford Mail has heard many interesting cases.

We have chosen the most compelling stories from the world of Oxford's courts from across the year. 

1. Miles Benfield

Oxford Mail: Conrad Welch Conrad Welch  (Image: Family handout)

Miles Benfield, who was suspected of a one-punch 'murder' during a fight in Oxford city centre, cannot be prosecuted.

Miles Benfield, who later died in a car crash on the M25 in Surrey on May 26, admitted striking 65-year-old Conrad Welch around the head causing him to fall to the ground on June 11, 2021.

However, at the time he said he struck him in self-defence, an inquest held at Oxford Coroner's Court heard in December. 

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Mr Welch died in hospital on June 19, 2021 - eight days after he was knocked to the ground by Mr Benfield on a night out to celebrate his 65th birthday.

Four men were initially arrested on suspicion of murder, all aged in their teens or early 20s and all from Oxfordshire.

They were all released on police bail. Of the four, three were released without charge in January of this year.

2. Mihai Hurmuz-Irimia

Oxford Mail: Mihai Hurmuz-IrimiaMihai Hurmuz-Irimia (Image: Thames Valley Police)

A man was jailed for life after murdering his wife in their home in Wallingford.

Katie Hurmuz-Irimia, 40, was found fatally stabbed in Blue Mountains in the early hours of 30 August last year.

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Mihai Hurmuz-Irimia, 29, was found guilty of her murder and will serve a minimum of 21 years before he is eligible for release.

3. Greg ‘Gino’ Muinami

Oxford Mail: Greg ‘Gino’ MuinamiGreg ‘Gino’ Muinami (Image: Thames Valley Police)

A teenager who murdered Alex Innes over a £100 debt for a pair of trainers was jailed for life, with a minimum term of 24 years and 71 days.

Greg ‘Gino’ Muinami, 19, was found guilty of stabbing 25-year-old Mr Innes through the heart in the early hours of November 13 last year.

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Videos were released by Thames Valley Police of Muinami apparently eating a wad of cash notes held in between a burger bun.

The short clip was sent to Mr Innes via Snapchat on November 1, as the two of them seemingly argued over a debt that Muinami was said to have owed the older man.

The teenager sent the video with the words ‘wanna bite?’ after Mr Innes told the younger man: “You owe me a bill [£100], bro.”

4. Jed Denton

Oxford Mail: Jed DentonJed Denton (Image: Thames Valley Police)

A teenager fled his abuser’s 4x4 and hammered at a stranger’s window in the dead of night.

The boy, who cannot be named for legal reasons, had been sexually assaulted by Jed Denton – having been driven from Oxford to Noke on a night in December 2021.

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He fled the Toyota Hilux pick-up, having told 29-year-old Denton that he needed to relieve himself.

Denton was jailed for eight years and 11 months.

5. Ibtisam Thanvi

A Littlemore man who attempted to murder his father after 'God told him to do it’ received a hospital order after being found not guilty by reason of insanity.

Ibtisam Thanvi, of Sandford Road, stabbed Sameeul Thanvi in the neck and abdomen, causing the abdomen content to protrude out, on August 20, 2021 in Slough.

The 26-year-old had a diagnosis of paranoid schizophrenia at the time of the incident and was later arrested and detained under the Mental Health Act 1983, a trial at Reading Crown Court heard.

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At the same court on November 8, Judge Sarah Campbell handed him a Section 37 hospital order and a Section 41 restriction order meaning he could only be discharged if the Secretary of State for Justice agreed.

6. Dudley Stein

Oxford Mail: Dudley SteinDudley Stein (Image: Thames Valley Police)

A repeat domestic abuser who threw his ex's pet pug out a first floor window as he was ‘snoring’ was jailed in July.

Dudley Stein, who was given more than 16 months for crimes committed against two ex-partners, was said to have told the woman that the dog, Borris, was ‘probably dead’ and added: “I wish it were you.”

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In a statement, the 30-year-old’s victim said her former boyfriend ‘often beats me up’ and said: “I am very afraid for Borris.”

7. Bilal Haider

Oxford Mail: Bilal HaiderBilal Haider (Image: Thames Valley Police)

A takeaway and supermarket worker who sexually attacked a Little Red Riding Hood-costumed student on Cowley Road was caught in part from the DNA he left on her red cape.

Bilal Haider, 27, who worked shifts at the takeaway and Tesco while he studied for a masters degree in Oxford, was caught on CCTV running after the young woman as they both headed east towards Cowley.

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The victim was on her way home, having spent the night at the Fishies club night at the O2 Academy in early November 2021.

Haider, of Hawkins Street, Oxford, was jailed for four and a half years and will remain on the sex offender register for life.

8. Godwin Dayoni

Oxford Mail: Godwin DayoniGodwin Dayoni (Image: Thames Valley Police)

A prison officer was left humiliated when an inmate threw a bowl of poo and urine at him.

Godwin Dayoni, then 18, was said to have held no grievance towards the HMP Bullingdon officer, but had been told to ‘pot’ the guard by a group of older prisoners on his wing.

Now 21, Dayoni was due to be – and was – released from the Bicester prison a day after the attack on July 12, 202. 

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He was serving a short jail term for common assault when he was chosen to carry out the assault.

Dayoni was jailed for three and a half years.

9. James de Jager

Oxford Mail: James de JagerJames de Jager (Image: Thames Valley Police)

James de Jager, formerly James Becks, stole £2,000 worth of soft furnishings, bedside tables, lamps, a mirror, a de-humidifier and more from a flat in Park End, Oxford, which is rented out by John Gitton.

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The items were valued at £1,810 altogether and though some were returned, many were damaged such as the bedside tables, a bedspread, and a standing lamp.

He was handed a 16-month prison sentence, suspended for two years and ordered to complete 100 hours of unpaid work, six rehabilitation days and pay £1,000 compensation.

10. James Carvell

Oxford Mail:  James Carvell James Carvell (Image: TVP)

James Carvell was sent back to jail at the age of 57 for his collection of more than 150,000 sex abuse images.

Oxford Crown Court was told that Carvell had collected the images out of an ‘obsessive’ compulsion rather than out of a sense of sexual gratification – and because struggles in childhood had left him with a deep ‘self-loathing’.

“He was desperate for help but did not know where to start – even to the point he wanted to castrate himself,” his barrister Preetika Mathur said.

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In total, more than 156,000 indecent images of children in categories A to C were discovered both on Carvell’s digital devices and on papers kept beneath his bed.

The twisted collection – amassed over 10 years  included sick and violent images involving child victims – some involving animals.

He was jailed for 28 months.