A MAN who killed a Port Glasgow dad with a single punch attack has been jailed for six years.

John Aitken, 45, struck 63-year-old Thomas Craig at the junction of Dalrymple Street and Laird Street in Greenock on March 14 with tragic consequences.

A trial heard how the attack took place moments after the two men and others had left the nearby Word Up nightclub as a dispute took place.

An eyewitness said that Mr Craig had been trying to calm down a row involving Aitken and other men.

The taxi driver said that as Mr Craig lay prone on the ground, Aitken put his arms in the air before walking off from the scene.

Thug Aitken, who has no fewer than 37 previous convictions, denied culpable homicide and lodged a special defence of self-defence.

But jurors rejected his claims and convicted him of culpable homicide.

He was back in the dock again yesterday, at the High Court in Edinburgh, for sentencing following the completion of background reports.

Judge Lord Woolman had been given a victim impact statement from Mr Craig’s son and the court heard that he was unable to put into words the impact that the loss of his father has had on his family.

Defence advocate Ian Duguid QC told Lord Woolman that his client had discussed Mr Craig’s death with the social workers who had been appointed to investigate his character.

The advocate added: “He became visibly emotional when discussing the matter.

"He became visibly emotional when discussing the impact that this event has had on Mr Craig’s family.

“He never anticipated and never wanted to cause Mr Craig’s death.

“He is very, very sorry for the pain and anguish he has caused to the family of Mr Craig.

“He would wish for his regret and remorse to be properly recorded and taken into account.”

Lord Woolman told Aitken that he would have to be jailed for his offences.

He added: “Mr Craig was older than you.

"Eyewitnesses told the court of how he adopted a defensive posture in the moments before the assault.

“The fact that you had taken alcohol at the time of the offence is no excuse.

“Your actions resulted in the loss of life and this makes the offence a serious one.

“Mr Craig’s son has written a victim impact statement and he cannot put into words the impact that loss of his father has had on his life.

“The sentence in this case will be one of six years.”