A 55-year-old man has been sentenced to seven years in prison - with the final three years suspended - for an assault on traditional musician Noel Hill.

Michael Folan from An Teach Mór, Lettermullen, Co Galway, had pleaded guilty to a charge of intentionally or recklessly causing harm to Mr Hill in December 2008.

The assault took place in a pub in Connemara on St Stephen's Day.

The incident left Mr Hill with lasting injuries and long term psychological damage.

In a lengthy victim impact statement last February, he told the Court that he had been destroyed by the assault - It broke his spirit and compromised his ability to play music.

At this morning's sentencing hearing at Galway Circuit Criminal Court, Judge Rory McCabe described the attack as horrible, nasty and vicious.

He sentenced Folan to seven years.

The final three years of the sentence will be suspended for a period of ten years, after Folan entered into a bond to keep the peace upon his release from prison.