A Purley man was given a life sentence yesterday for beating a stranger to death in an unprovoked attack along with two accomplices.

Shane Crawt, 19, of Lodge Lane, was sentenced to life with a minimum of 15 years having been convicted of murdering 48-year-old Scott Wilkinson near Sunbury Lock in July 2016.

His brother Lenny Crawt, 18, of West Molesey was also found guilty of murder and given the same sentence.

Their cousin Charlie Smith, 24, was sentenced to 13 years after being convicted of manslaughter. He will serve half his sentence and the remainder on licence, Surrey Police said.

The Crawt brothers and their cousin Mr Smith attacked 48-year-old Scott Wilkinson on Donkey Island near Walton-on-Thames on July 27 (2016) before fleeing and burning their clothes.

They then boasted of their actions over the following weeks.

Shane Crawt, Lenny Crawt and Mr Smith, who at the time were aged 17, 16, and 21 respectively, killed Mr Wilkinson just before 11.30pm on the island.

Together they violently attacked Mr Wilkinson, punching, kicking and hitting him with a large piece of wood.

Police said he sustained "catastrophic head injuries," from the attack.

The trio then left Mr Wilkinson for dead, who lay for hours before dying of the injuries he sustained during the attack.

The trio were unanimously found guilty after a five week trial at Guildford Crown Court on Friday, March 8.

Detective Inspector Paddy Mayers, who led the investigation said: “The sentences given today (March 12) reflect the severity of the ferocious actions the three took that night back in 2016.

"Today and always our thoughts and sympathies remain with Scott’s family. I hope the sentences can begin to provide them with some closure for what happened knowing that those responsible are finally where they belong."

A statement from Mr Wilkinson's family was read out in court, which said: "We will never recover. We will never find peace in a world without Scott. We will never be the same again and we will never forgive those responsible.

"Rest in peace Scott. Son, brother, nephew, father, partner and friend. Gone fishing.”