THREE friends, who brutally beat a man in a homophobic assault, will be sentenced next month.

Dominic Nagy, of Dudley Street, Orford, Vladimir Puchala, of Patterdale Avenue, Orford, and Martin Uhlar, of Tyne Close, Orford, attacked a man after he was invited to the house for drinks.

The men, aged between 24 and 33, punched the victim repeatedly and shouted homophobic abuse as he tried to escape.

The court heard how the victim was invited to the house on Densham Avenue on June 1 after chatting to a man he believed to be called Stephan on a Slovakian chat room for several hours earlier that day.

When the victim arrived at the house, Uhlar identified himself as Stephan and invited him inside and asked him to wait in the living room.

The court heard Puchala entered the room and started to punch the victim shouting homophobic insults at him.

Uhlar and Nagy then joined in with all three men repeatedly punching the victim in the head.

The victim managed to escape and was later treated at Warrington Hospital for bruising and swelling and was kept in overnight due to his head injuries.

Prosecuting Joanne Clark said: “In the police interview, Uhlar said he had invited the complainant as a joke and a laugh. He did not think the victim would turn up.

“He did not tell the other housemates that he had invited him.”

Uhlar, aged 33, and Puchala, aged 30, who have no previous convictions, both pleaded guilty to the assault at Halton Magistrates Court on Tuesday.

Puchala said the fight broke out as he did not know who the victim was and, when he challenged the victim, he began to clench his fists.

Uhlar claims he was trying to break up the fight.

Both men admitted shouting abuse at the victim but claim it was not meant in a homophobic manner.

Nagy, aged 24, was found guilty of the assault.

He claimed he was not there when the offence took place despite fitting the description of the attacker given to the police and later being picked out during an identity parade.

When giving evidence in court, the victim said the attack has forced him to be signed off work due to the stress and is now seeing a clinical psychologist.

All three men will be sentenced on February 13 at Halton Magistrates Court.