A chef was jailed for nine years this week for an attack on a young man in Liverpool’s gay quarter last autumn.

Anthony O’Leary, 41, attacked barman Alan Latham, 22 in an alleyway, stamping repeatedly on his victim’s head.

Mr Latham, known to his friends as “meerkat” because of his slight build, was found half-naked and with critical head injuries in Progress Place in Liverpool city centre, behind the Superstar Boudoir nightclub, in the early hours of 14 September last year.

He was taken to Walton Neurological Centre, where he was placed on life-support.

Prosecutor Theresa Lofthus told Liverpool crown court: “At 3am he [Mr Latham] was seen to leave Superstar Boudoir. He was very unsteady on his feet and appeared to be intoxicated. He walked into Victoria Street and turned into Progress Place.

“From CCTV [footage] which was recovered inside Progress Place, the victim was seen to remain there until the assault took place.”

The footage showed O’Leary walking into the alley after 4am and kicking Mr Latham in the head several times before dragging him around a corner.

A witness whose flat overlooks Progress Place said she was woken by the “distinctive and frightening” sound of a man screaming in pain and another man’s voice – O’Leary’s – mimicking the screams and shouting: “Can you feel me now, lad?”