Sydney man has jail sentence overturned for bashing love rival at JJ Kelly Park

A Sydney man who attacked a love rival in a late night bashing at JJ Kelly Park in Wollongong has had his 12-month prison sentence overturned on appeal.

Pavao Paul Conjar had the jail term converted to a two-year suspended sentence during a recent appeal in Wollongong District Court after his lawyers convinced Judge Penelope Wass that justice would be better served by Conjar continuing his intensive rehabilitation in the community.

The 21-year-old was charged with reckless wounding in company after the July 2015 incident, in which he and three other men set upon his ex-girlfriend’s new partner, bashing him with a pole.

The court heard Conjar and his ex-girlfriend split in February 2015 after a three year romance. She and the victim began dating in June.

Conjar, upset by the new relationship, arrived at the woman’s house in the early hours of July 24 and tried to win her back by confessing his continuing love for her. It was not reciprocated.

Six days later, Conjar organised to meet his ex-’s new partner at JJ Kelly Park at 10.30pm. Upon arrival, Conjar ordered the man to stay away from the woman.

When the victim refused, Conjar punched him in the face before one of Conjar’s friend grabbed a pole and hit the victim in the head.

He was then repeatedly kicked and hit before the group fled.

The victim was later taken to hospital in a disorientated state, where he received treatment for a cut to the back of his head, a tear in his ear and swelling on his body.

Early the next morning, Conjar sent his ex-girlfriend a message via Snapchat warning her she and her family would be “next”.

Conjar was contacted by police the same day but failed to show up to an arranged meeting with officers. He was arrested on August 6.

In agreeing to downgrade the sentence, Judge Wass noted Conjar had strong family support and was undergoing intensive counselling to deal with his issues, which she said lowered his risk of re-offending.

“I’m unlikely to see him in this court again if he continues on this path,” she said.

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