A man who threatened a convicted sex offender to get out of his neighbourhood in Dundee “or else” has been fined after a sheriff told him that “unless we set up ghettoes” for perverts they have “to live near somebody”.
Gerald McLellan was handed a £500 fine for “behaving in a threatening or abusive manner likely to cause fear or alarm” towards Gary Brown at an address in the Ballumbie area last May.
Two weeks earlier Brown, a joiner, had been sentenced at Dundee Sheriff Court after he admitted trading indecent images of children on a messaging app with other sex offenders and possessing bestiality images.
McLellan today sat in the same dock where Brown was sentenced after he was convicted of making threats towards Brown and his wife.
An earlier trial heard McLellan – who lives in the street adjoining that where Brown lived at the time – branded him a “f*****g paedophile” then added: “You better move from this area or else.”
A sheriff told McLellan that “nobody expects members of the public to be friendly” to convicted sex offenders – but that they can’t “take matters in to their own hands”.
McLellan, 50, of Duns Crescent, Dundee, was found guilty after trial of a charge of behaving in a threatening or abusive manner on May 10 last year at an address in Aberlady Crecent, Dundee.
Defence solicitor Gary McIlravey said: “He maintains his position from the trial denying the offence. He is a first offender.”
Sheriff Alastair Brown imposed a fine of £500 on McLellan.
He said: “Nobody expects members of the public to be friendly to those who have committed offences of that sort, or requires them to pretend nothing had happened and it is not surprising if members of the public or neighbours want nothing more to do with such people. That’s simply a consequence of what he did.
“You, however, went further. You went in to abusive and threatening behaviour. You suggested that he should ‘move away or else’. I don’t know where you expect he should go.
“Unless we are to set up a ghetto for those who have downloaded material they are going to be living near to somebody.
“You don’t abuse or make threats because that’s an offence against the rule of law.”