A wealthy Scottish businessman who head butted his business partner at a Michelin star restaurant after a deal left him £120,000 out of pocket has been spared jail.
Mark Emlick, of Battersea, south-west London, head butted his friend Marcus Watson on 17 October at Aquavit restaurant in central London, leaving his colleague spitting blood.
The 55-year-old admitted to the assault in November.
Emlick is the chairman of Edinburgh-based specialist real estate and asset management company Consensus Capital Group plc, which is based in Craigmillar Park.
He was today given a 12-month community order for 80 hours unpaid work at Westminster Magistrates’ Court.
Chairwoman of the bench Joanna Varley also ordered Emlick to pay an £85 victim surcharge and £85 in costs.
Emlick lives in a £3 million townhouse on Cotswold Mews, Battersea.
He once appeared on Sky TV’s ‘Who’d Be A Billionaire?’ show enjoying a £9,000-a day Botswana safari as he downed four gin and tonics.
The family friends, who have holidayed together and live just hundreds of metres away from each other, had been in business together for seven years and known each other for two decades.
However, things turned sour when Emlick previously invested £250,000 in one of Mr Watson’s businesses and the deal “did not turn out as what it should have been”.
Defence barrister Andrew Copeland said Emlick, who lost around half of his investment, went along to the restaurant hoping the pair could put the situation behind them and move on.
It was the first time they had met since their previous dispute.
They talked briefly at the bar about 9pm before the altercation, which left the victim feeling ashamed, embarrassed and lacking confidence.
Mr Copeland said CCTV captured the assault as the men chatted at the restaurant bar. “You can see the head going to the face, the nose area,” he said.
“The explanation is his loss of £125,000 pounds and being told to “jog on for your money” is what provoked him.
‘They are at the bar and there is a conversation for a minute-and-a-half. Something must have been said by Mr.Watson for the defendant to react the way he did, which was purely momentary.
“It is somebody he knows, a friend who he feels has exploited this situation and the company’s been wound up and he knows he is not going to get the money.”
Mr Copeland said the single act of violence was “purely momentary” and a result of provocation, adding that Emlick had since shown remorse.
Prosecutor Miss Aislin Rice said: “He head butted him to the left side of his face, causing a laceration to the inside of the mouth.”
In a statement released after his sentencing, Emlick said: “I have known Marcus Watson as a friend and business partner for over 20 years.
“What started as a disagreement over my lost investment in Adoreum Partners has unfortunately escalated into an argument and a momentary loss of control on my part which I very much regret and for which I apologise completely.”