Aberdeen activist who threatened to shoot the Queen on Twitter sentenced

A political activist who sparked a major terrorism investigation after posting tweets threatening to kill the Queen has admitted he is “massively relieved” to avoid a jail sentence.

Alastair Peter Dow took to Twitter during the Commonwealth Games in 2014 to say he was a “man at war for my freedom” and suggesting his “army” would shoot the monarch.

Yesterday, the 56-year-old was fined as punishment for a “serious” breach of the peace. Dow had denied the allegations made against him and claimed his messages had been “blown out of proportion”.

Police in Aberdeen raided Dow’s Hollybank Place address on July 26, 2014, responding to reports he had threatened to harm the Queen in a social media post.

During proceedings, Aberdeen Sheriff Court heard detectives set up a specialist unit to combat terrorism during the Commonwealth Games in Glasgow.

One of Dow’s public messages said he wanted to see the “Queen’s brains blown out and her body splattered over the ground”.

Another said: “As a man at war for my freedom against the imposed monarch, I want my army to put a bullet in the Queen’s head.”

Representing himself in court yesterday, Dow said he was always happy to “delete or moderate tweets”.

“In my opinion there was no reason to escalate my tweets to a court case. I would co-operate with anything to avoid a jail sentence.”

Sentencing Dow, Sheriff Morag McLaughlin said: “I’m not going to impose jail. I think it would be disproportionate. Since this happened in 2014, there’s been nothing else.

“We will always disagree about the seriousness, but I consider it to be a serious breach of the peace.”

Dow said it was a “massive relief” that he will not be forced to spend time behind bars.

He was fined £500 to be paid at the rate of £20 per month.

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