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Warning: distressing content.

A 33-year-old man has been jailed for smashing a 20kg weight onto a gymgoer's head while pretending to fall over.

Shane William Ryan from Darwin, Australia, was sentenced to 19 months after the horrific attack was caught on CCTV.

The clip shows the "disturbing and motiveless attack" with Ryan carrying the heavy dumbbell towards the victim at Next Level Gym. He can be seen working out on the bench press. As Ryan approaches him, he pretends to trip before slamming the weight into his face with incredible force.

The victim was left in agony with a fractured skull, a cut on his eyebrow and swelling. Ryan scurries off the scene pretending to have injured his ankle.

Moments later, he returns to phone emergency services. According to reports, the pair had an "amicable" and "friendly" relationship.

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The victim was also left with "significant and ongoing" psychological issues" following the incident.

In court, Ryan insisted the assault was "accidental", but later admitted to it being deliberate.

Justice Burns told Ryan: "The victim was vulnerable as he was lying on his back and had weights in his hands, he was unable to protect himself.

"He also had no reason to believe that you would attack him as you did.

"The lack of an obvious motive for you to have engaged in this offence is troubling.

"Where there is obvious motive for an offence it is often possible to assess the likelihood of the offender reoffending.

"That is simply not possible in circumstances where there is no obvious motive and you have chosen not to shed any light on that issue."

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