A DRUG addict who savagely beat his father to death with a cricket bat while he crawled defenceless on the floor must spend at least 20 years behind bars.

Phillip Tajinder Badwal was this afternoon jailed for life for attacking Santokh ‘Charlie’ Singh at the family home in Airedale Road, Undercliffe, Bradford, on November 30, 2020.

Badwal, 25, brutally assaulted his father the day after his 59th birthday, beating him with a cricket bat, kicking him with a shod foot, stamping on him and assaulting him with a metal dog bowl.

“It was a savage, brutal and persistent assault on a defenceless man,” Judge Jonathan Rose said.

He set a 20-year minimum term that Badwal must spend in prison before the Parole Board can even consider his release.

Judge Rose told Badwal, who changed his plea to guilty to murder part-way through his trial yesterday, that the only sentence was one of life imprisonment.

He was under the influence of drugs and alcohol when he carried out the “sustained and severe” attack on a man who was physically and emotionally vulnerable.

Mr Singh was 59 and had celebrated his birthday the day before with his older sons, Charles and Richard. They held him in esteem and affection and had given him presents. He was treated by them with love and respect, Judge Rose said.

They had secured him a flat in Shipley and he was excited about moving in there.

Mr Singh was a hardworking engineer and a social man who enjoyed going to the pub after work. He was a happy-go-lucky, kind soul, known locally as the King of Otley Road.

Judge Rose said he became “diminished” in his later life. Badwal had taken his money and possessions and beaten him up.

Mr Singh was subjected to controlling, violent and coercive behaviour and dominated by Badwal.

He took money from his father to buy drugs and sent him a text on November 28, 2020, calling him names and telling him to order Class A drugs for him.

He had “a malign influence” on Mr Singh, Judge Rose said.

On the day of the murder, Badwal was desperate for drugs and texted the “Johnny” dealer line to order heroin and crack cocaine.

He then attacked his father with “unspeakable violence,” striking his head and legs with a cricket bat, kicking and stamping on him and hitting him with a metal dog bowl so hard it was dented.

His head was struck against the wall and the attack continued when he was defenceless and at floor level.

Afterwards, Badwal prioritised his need for Class A drugs, ringing a dealer before calling 999 for help. He then lied to the police about what had happened.

When he was arrested for murder, he was aggressive and threatening to the police of-ficers.

Mr Singh’s two eldest sons had to give evidence in the trial before Badwal pleaded guilty to the murder, Judge Rose said.

Prosecutor Richard Wright QC said Badwal’s previous convictions included battery, ra-cially aggravated threatening behaviour and threatening behaviour.

He was currently serving a five-year sentence for robbery, attempted robbery and possession of an offensive weapon. He and others had subjected members of the public to violent assaults to rob them in the street, the court was told.

He was on bail for those offences when he murdered his father.

Mr Wright said the court could be sure of a domestic abuse background to the case.

“This is a murder in a domestic context,” he said, it involved a breach of trust because a son had killed his father in his own home.

Mr Singh was crawling about on the floor when a variety of weapons were used against him. He had suffered significantly, mentally and physically, before he eventually died.

Badwal had delayed calling for help to phone and order drugs and he had disposed of the cricket bat in a neighbour’s garden.

His barrister, Peter Moulson QC, said Badwal expressed his sincere apologies to family members and all those affected by Mr Singh’s loss.

His guilty plea after he had heard the prosecution opening reflected his remorse.

Badwal’s mother, Mr Singh’s wife, said she had equal love for her husband and her son and did not take sides in any way, Mr Moulson said.

“I have lost my husband and I’m going to lose my son for many years now,” she had stated.