26/04/2012 16:15 BST | Updated 26/06/2012 06:12 BST

Eric Joyce, Fight MP: 'There's Nothing Wrong With Low Level Violence'

The MP convicted of assaulting fellow politicians in a House of Commons bar has given a revealing interview to Channel 4.

Eric Joyce was suspended from, and later quit, the Labour Party after a fight in which he head butted Conservative MP Stewart Andrew and attacked several others.

On Thursday he spoke of his regret, but stated: “I think there’s room for a bit of consensual low level violence. If a couple of guys want to have a fight outside a pub and no-one gets terribly injured then I really don’t think that’s a matter for the police to get involved.”

He added: “People are allowed to have consensual sado-masochistic sex and that’s allowed and it seems to me that broadly it fits into the same bracket.”

Joyce told the programme the “whole thing happened because I’d been drinking and I got quite fighty”.

He was given a 12-month community order and a fine of £3,000 by Westminster Magistrates' Court in March, as well as a ban from entering pubs and licensed premises for three months.


Following his conviction he expressed his "personal shame" at his actions and apologised to those he had hurt.

However in an interview with the Mail on Sunday, Joyce recounted the attack and gave readers lessons in how to best perform a headbutt.

"I saw red. I thumped them with my fist and my head – not with massive viciousness, just enough to sting them," he said.

"They were quite genteel people. It was more like me marauding. It wasn’t a fight, it was me on the rampage."

The former Army officer had some advice for people looking to take matters in to their own hands as he had: "You aim for the bridge of the nose because it is very soft. Then hit them. Just a couple of times."