A chef stabbed a diner in the neck with a steak knife after accusing him of "staring at his girlfriend" in a London restaurant.

Fabio Montoya, 27, was jailed for three years and nine months on Friday after admitting wounding with intent to do grievous bodily harm.

Inner London Crown Court heard Montoya, who has been living in Britain for the last eight years, picked up his steak knife and plunged it into Diego Olave's neck in a "dangerous and reprehensible way" on September 27 last year.

The Spanish-national said he "saw red" after the victim kept looking over at his girlfriend and called her a "whore" as he left La Barra in Walworth, south London.

La Barra is located in Walworth, South London
La Barra is located in Walworth, South London

The knife cut through muscle but narrowly avoided a major artery, and was then used to slash at the victim's face "in an attempt to disfigure him".

Prosecutor Gareth Munday said: "At about 12 in the afternoon the victim entered the restaurant with a friend, sat by the bar and started drinking. By the time of the stabbing he had seven or eight beers and some food.

"The defendant and his partner came into the restaurant and they sat in a window booth, the defendant and his partner confronted the victim about the fact he was looking at them."

Fabio Montoya
Montoya accused the other diner of staring at him and his girlfriend

The court heard Montoya approached Mr Olave to ask him to stop looking at his girlfriend but the victim was "abusive" and called them "derogatory terms".

Friends and restaurant staff eventually convinced Mr Olave to leave, but it was said that he called Montoya's girlfriend a "whore or bitch" in Spanish.

Mr Munday said: "The defendant has selected a steak knife from the table having heard the word and the defendant, holding the knife downwards in his hand, stabbed him in the neck in a sideways motion then aimed for his face."

The court heard Montoya then came back into the restaurant and apologised to staff before returning the knife and paying the bill.

Inner London Crown Court
Montoya was jailed for three years and nine months at Inner London Crown Court

He was arrested in December and admitted the attack in a police interview.

Mark Stevens, defending, said: "He doesn't remember exactly what happened. He accepts he was in a rage."

Mr Olave was left with a stab wound in his neck that had to be glued shut, and a 5cm slash under his hairline where the knife was "raked" across his face, which required stitches and may scar.

Judge Silas Reid said he had read a number of character references for Montoya - a chef who doesn't work La Barra - and ruled the incident was "entirely out of character".

Jailing him, Judge Reid added: "Mr Olave used derogatory terms against your partner, then on leaving used a very unpleasant term indeed, but that was not acceptable provocation for what you did.

"You told police you saw red. You had the knife pointing down out of your closed hand and stabbed it into his neck, as you moved away you stabbed it towards his face and ended up causing a number of injuries to him.

"You could easily have killed him, even though you wouldn't have had the intention to kill him you would have been successfully prosecuted for murder and quite possibly the rest of your useful adult life would have been gone as well as his."