The first court round-up of the week.
£2.50 per month
A fraudster who was caught working while claiming nearly £23,000 in benefits is paying back just £2.50 per month.
Alexandra Rutherford is facing prison after she admitted failing to tell the Department for Work and Pensions that she was living with a man and in paid employment.
The 63-year-old is awaiting sentencing for failing to declare she was living with David Wood, who was in “remunerative employment”, at an address on Dalgleish Road, Dundee.
Rutherford, now of Gilbert Avenue, North Berwick, also concealed she was in paid employment and admitted obtaining £22,944.76 of employment support allowance (income related) to which she was not entitled.
She previously pled guilty to the charge at Dundee Sheriff Court but was not present for a sentencing hearing before Sheriff John Rafferty.
The court heard how Rutherford had set up a £2.50 per month direct debit in order to pay off her bogus claims.
“This is well and comfortably within the range of a maximum prison sentence,” Sheriff Rafferty said.
“I have to say, it seems to me to be the most likely outcome.”
Sentence was further deferred until February for Rutherford to appear personally in the dock.
Glenrothes man Robert Burns pled guilty to sexually assaulting another male. He changed his plea mid-way through a trial at Kirkcaldy Sheriff Court to admit the offence.
Thief bombarded mother
A Perth thief has received a supervision order for threatening to damage his mother’s home.
Michael Czekalla, 27, sent a threatening text to his mother when she refused to give him money.
Czekalla appeared in Perth Sheriff Court and pled guilty to the threatening and abusive behaviour.
Fiscal depute Rebecca Kinniston described how Czekalla had been relentlessly texting his mother for cash on the day of January 31, 2020.
“He had been bombarding her throughout the day, asking her for money.
“At 2.40 that afternoon, he texted her ‘I am going to put a brick through the window, you’ve had plenty of warning’.”
The frightened mother quickly called the police, who soon traced and arrested Czekalla.
He admitted sending the message to his mother.
Czekalla, of Primrose Place, Perth, also pled guilty to stealing more than £200 worth of products from the Boots outlet on High Street, Perth.
He stole £118.15 worth of gift sets on October 31, 2020 and stole £124.50 worth of gift sets and tanning products five days later.
Sheriff Eric Brown sentenced Czekalla to 12 months supervision.
Kyle McKenzie, 23, from Glenrothes admitted raping an 83-year-old in her Fife home. He had broken into her house and threatened her with a garden fork before beating her up and committing the sex crime. He was scared off when she managed to summon help using her community alarm.
In case you missed it…
Friday round-up – Arwen proves a trial in Dundee
Thursday round-up — Scratched Mustang and hosed
Wednesday round-up — Confused and on coke
Tuesday round-up — Leg break and lamp post crashes
The full caseload of the Dundee Crime and Courts Team can be found here.