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Weekend court roll – war threats and an attempted murder

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Our reporters have been sitting in courtrooms across the north and north-east this week and covered a wide variety of cases.

Man caught flushing drugs down loo

Police raided an Aberdeen home just in time to find a man with his hand down the toilet “frantically” trying to flush away drugs.

Dylan Dunlop was standing outside his property on Marchburn Road in Aberdeen with another male when they spotted police arriving to execute a search warrant.

Dylan Dunlop leaving Aberdeen Sheriff Court.

They fled inside and locked the door, forcing officers to smash their way in.

When police reached the bathroom they found Dunlop, 25, on his knees with his hand in the bowl.

Man’s threats to bite victim’s face off

A man has been jailed after he told a man he would “bite his face off” then marched him to a cash machine and removed the maximum amount from his account.

Jeff Binnie, 28, immediately became violent with the man after finding out he had £350 in his account.

Jeff Binnie robbed a man. Supplied by Facebook Date; 11/03/2022

Binnie punched his victim several times to the face, telling him he would “leave him for dead” if he tried to run off.

He then got the man to enter his pin number before pushing him out of the way and removing £250.

Families react after vile paedophile jailed

A dangerous Aberdeen paedophile who abused two young girls has been handed an extended sentence – despite his bizarre claim the offences were not sexually motivated.

Alan Bremner was slapped with a seven-and-a-half-year extended sentence at Aberdeen Sheriff Court and banned from contacting or approaching girls under 16 indefinitely.

Alan Bremner has been handed an extended sentence.

In imposing the lengthy sentence, Sheriff Graham Buchanan said it was “necessary to protect the public” from the 59-year-old, and branded his claim that the crimes were not committed for sexual gratification “very, very hard to understand”.

That sentiment was echoed by the mother of one of his victims who told us: “He got caught and he doesn’t like it.

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Crimewatch appeal over 1983 murder

Police investigating the murder of a taxi driver more than 38 years ago have made a fresh appeal on national television in a bid to find more answers.

George Murdoch, known as Dod, was attacked with a cheese wire while working in Aberdeen on September 29 1983.

George Murdoch was attacked with a cheese wire while working in Aberdeen in 1983. (Police Scotland handout/PA)

At 8.35pm he told his control room he was heading to Culter, but never reached his destination.

The 58-year-old turned on to Pitfodels Station Road, just on the outskirts of the city near Deeside Railway Line, where he was attacked and later died.

Moray man flung dog down stairs

An Elgin man has admitted throwing his pet collie down a flight of stairs.

Clive Vincent-Ellis admitted picking up the dog by the scruff of its neck before dropping it down the stairs of his Moray home on September 1, last year.

Clive Vincent-Ellis appeared at Elgin Sheriff Court.

The 52-year-old previously denied four charges of causing an animal unnecessary suffering at his Bishopmill home during both January and September 2021.

But ahead of a trial starting at Elgin Sheriff Court, he changed his plea and admitted one charge under the Animal Health and Welfare Scotland Act.

Man charged over thefts from garage

A man has been charged in connection with the theft of catalytic convertors from a north-east garage forecourt.

Police appealed for information last week after eight of the machines, worth more than £8,000, were taken from a garage in Inverurie at about midnight on March 8.

Now they have confirmed a 25-year-old is due to appear at Aberdeen Sheriff Court today.

A police spokesman said: “We can confirm a 25-year-old man has been arrested and charged in connection with the theft of catalytic convertors from a garage forecourt in Inverurie, Aberdeenshire.”

‘Good man’ threatened to start World War 3

A self-confessed “good man” dialled 999 and threatened to murder police and start World War 3 after learning cops had seized his daughter’s new motorbike.

HGV driver Wayne Dean had been boozing in the Premier Inn on Ellon Road when he learned police back home in Northampton had seized the bike which had turned out to be stolen.

Wayne Dean getting out of court collage with speech clouds
Wayne Dean made various threats during the 999 calls.

The 52-year-old furiously dialled 999 to remonstrate with police and ended up unleashing a tirade of abuse at the unsuspecting call handler.

Despite admitting the expletive-ridden phone calls, Dean was keen to ensure Sheriff Valerie Johnston didn’t get the wrong impression of him, insisting: “I’m a good man.”

Boozy seaman ‘unhappy’ over rugby

A seaman has been banned from the road after jumping in his car more than five times the booze limit after becoming unhappy at a rugby party.

Mark Gifford had attended a party with his partner and her colleagues to watch a rugby match, but decided to leave early after starting to feel “not particularly welcomed”.

Mark Gifford.

The 43-year-old made the “stupid” decision to drive and was stopped by cops on his way home after they received a tip-off.

Fiscal depute Victoria Kerr said the incident happened on the A96 between Huntly and Colpy around 7.10pm on February 5.

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Biker led cops on high-speed chase

An off-road biker who led cops on a 15-mile chase through Aberdeenshire and Aberdeen evaded stingers, ran red lights and hit speeds of 60mph.

Dylin Mundie had no insurance or licence when he was spotted by officers hurling his dirt bike around Durris Woods near Drumoak.

Dylin Mundie leaves Aberdeen Sheriff Court.

He fled and managed to escape their attempts to stop him multiple times before he was finally cornered in the city.

Fiscal depute Kiral Bonavina told Aberdeen Sheriff Court how police were called by a member of the public reporting someone driving an off-road bike in the Clune Wood area at around noon on March 23 2020.

Fare dodger spat on conductor

A fare dodger who spat on a train conductor who confronted him has avoided jail.

Sam Goddard spat at the Scotrail worker on the train before turning his aggression on British Transport Police officers who were called to meet him at Aberdeen railway station.

Sam Goddard outside of Aberdeen Sheriff court
Sam Goddard leaving Aberdeen Sheriff Court.

The 27-year-old, from Dundee, refused to stump up for his ticket on the Abellio Scotrail service from his home city to Aberdeen on July 17 2020.

Fiscal depute Kiral Bonavino told Aberdeen Sheriff Court how Goddard had been on the train at around 6am and was sitting in a rear cabin on his own.

Dad almost ran over school teacher

A dad-of-two who narrowly avoided running over the deputy head of his children’s school says he’s been left mortified by the experience.

Kenneth Onyegbule was picking up his two daughters from Harlaw Academy when he drove his car towards Janet Rennie after she asked him to move his vehicle.

Harlaw Academy in Albyn Place.

The 52-year-old had been parked half on the road and half on the pavement and was blocking access for a school bus, Aberdeen Sheriff Court was told.

Fiscal depute Lewis Devoy said that when Ms Rennie asked to move Onyegbule “waved her away” before his silver Kia “lurched forward”.

Teen given chance to change

An Inverness teenager has been given a chance to steer herself away from a life of crime thanks to a sheriff and prison staff.

Leah Petrie has been on remand in the Peterhead facility since January 26 this year after committing a series of offences.

But while there, the prison’s chaplain and social work staff managed to secure a place for the 19-year-old in a residential unit in Wales for troubled individuals run by Teen Challenge UK.

When Sheriff Robert Frazer heard about Petrie’s opportunity from defence solicitor Marc Dickson and social workers, he was eager for it to happen.<

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Drink-driving dad apologises to court

A dad-of-two seen driving erratically during the night was behind the wheel while more than four times the drink-drive limit.

Not only was Lewis Macdonald over the limit but he also didn’t have a valid licence or insurance.

Lewis Macdonald leaving Aberdeen Sheriff Court.

Fiscal depute Lewis Devoy told Aberdeen Sheriff Court that at just after midnight on February 20 this year Macdonald caught the attention of police on patrol in the Westburn Road area of the city.

Representing himself in court, Macdonald apologised for drink-driving and driving without insurance or a licence.

Orcadian snared by paedo hunter

A young Orcadian who sought to groom a 13-year-old girl was brought to justice by a paedophile hunter group.

Jonathan Moody tried to arrange a date after a series of online chats during which he sent an indecent picture.

But Kirkwall Sheriff Court heard that the 24-year-old was the target of a sting operation.

Fiscal depute Sue Foard said Moody had, in fact, been chatting with an adult male member of an online paedophile hunter group.

Grindr killer handed life sentence for ‘brutal and callous’ murder

A killer who brutally murdered an Aberdeen man he met on a dating website has been jailed for life for the “brutal and callous” attack.

Drink and drug-fuelled David Bain stabbed railway employee Clifford Anderson in the heart before abandoning the fatally-injured man in his flat on August 23, 2020.

Clifford Anderson and police at the scene of his death in Jasmine Terrace.

And now a judge has ordered the 28-year-old to serve a minimum of 16 years in prison before he is eligible to seek release.

Lord Boyd of Duncansby told Bain at the High Court in Edinburgh: “Whether or not you will be released on bail will be a matter for the parole board.”

Drunk hurled racist abuse at cabbie

An Alness woman who drunkenly assaulted and hurled racist abuse at a taxi driver has been ordered to pay him compensation.

Jessica Crawford had been on a night out in Inverness when she fell out with her intoxicated friend as they climbed into the back of a taxi on December 22 last year.

Jessica Crawford at Inverness Sheriff Court.

When the driver tried to talk to the arguing pair Crawford, 31, told him to “shut up” before using the N-word towards him.

Then, when he threw her out of his cab she launched herself at the man, swinging her arms and striking his face.

Mum jailed for failed fraud attempts

Orkney businesswoman Lisa Groundwater has been jailed for two years after trying to commit frauds totalling £1.5million.

The 38-year-old mother-of-three admitted depositing five cheques at the Royal Bank of Scotland in Kirkwall, which all bounced.

Collage of Lisa Groundwater and Kirkwall Sheriff Court in Orkney.
Lisa Groundwater has been jailed for two years. Photo: Police Scotland/DCT Media

Fiscal Sue Foard told Kirkwall Sheriff Court the money was all paid into a deposit account held by Groundwater, who had access to the money during the clearing process.

The transactions had left the bank £485,021.99 out of pocket.

Attempted murder caught on camera

An Aberdeen man was caught on mobile phone footage trying to kill a stranger.

Aaron McAllister, 30, punched, kicked and stabbed the man twice outside the victim’s home in Marischal Court in the city centre.

Marischal Court, Castlegate, Aberdeen.

The 42-year-old had been returning from buying food with his friends on January 30 last year when McAllister confronted him.

The men started arguing before a fight broke out in the car park.

Prosecutor Leigh Lawrie told the High Court in Glasgow that McAllister then pulled out a knife.

Man accused of US shooting wins fight against extradition

An Aberdeen man wanted over the shooting of a security guard in Texas cannot be extradited to America because it might violate his human rights, a Scottish judge has ruled.

Former Dyce Academy pupil Daniel Magee fled the USA after a security guard was wounded during a shooting incident at a frat party near the University of Texas in Austin.

Daniel Magee is accused of shooting a security guard in Texas back in 2016.

Magee was 19 when he was charged with assault with a deadly weapon after allegedly opening fire at the man in 2016.

But he skipped bail and returned to the Granite City, where his family are understood to live in Dyce, and hasn’t been back since.

Predator jailed for sex attack

A Peterhead fisherman who carried out a “dreadful” sex attack on a woman after supplying her with a potent drug has been jailed for seven years.

Former fisherman Andrew Marsters gave his victim Etizolam before molesting her and performing sex acts on her during the assault in Peterhead in September 2019.

Following an earlier guilty plea, the 48-year-old was sentenced by a judge at the High Court in Edinburgh who told him he regarded the offences as “very serious indeed”.

Lord Boyd of Duncansby pointed out that the victim’s intoxicated state was as a result of the Etizolam that Marsters had supplied to her.

Three in dock over oil thefts

Three Tayside men have appeared in the dock in connection with a string of alleged thefts of used cooking oil across the north-east.

Vasil Miktov, 32, Georgi Stanchev, 52, and Vasil Stanchev, 21, all from Arbroath, are each accused of three theft charges and two of being in or on a building with intent to commit theft.

Three men appeared at Aberdeen Sheriff Court after being charged in connection with a string of alleged thefts of used cooking oil across the north-east and Tayside.

They appeared at Aberdeen Sheriff Court yesterday over the thefts which are alleged to have taken in the north-east and Tayside between March 10 and March 16.

All three men made no plea at the hearing and were committed for further examination.

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