A stalker bombarded an Inverness woman with gifts of jewellery, cheese and even a pair of roller skates as he refused to accept their relationship was over.
Geza Szakacs, who is originally from Hungary, carried out the campaign across three months between December 2020 and February 2021.
The woman contacted the police twice during that time, asking that officers warn off the 51-year-old who now lives in Penrith.
But Szakacs continued his behaviour and, on the day he was arrested, police were in the woman’s house when he turned up at her door again with bags of food.
Today at Inverness Sheriff Court, Szakacs admitted stalking the woman and was fined £520.
He was also banned from harassing the woman for three years.
Lawyer says stalker was ‘besotted’
His lawyer, Gerry Sweeney, told Sheriff Margaret Neilson that his client was “heartbroken” and insisted he presented no threat to the woman.
Mr Sweeney said: “He couldn’t help himself. He was lovelorn and besotted with the lady. There was discomfort and upset for her but no threat or danger.
“He was heartbroken but I have stressed to him that the relationship is at a final conclusion.”
Sentencing Szakacs, Sheriff Neilson warned him of a jail sentence if he contacted the woman again.
Stalking can take many forms
National Procurator Fiscal for Domestic Abuse, Moira Price, last month penned a column for the Press and Journal “reaffirming the commitment of Scotland’s prosecutors in tackling stalking and protecting victims”.
She wrote: “Stalking takes many forms and can involve spying on a victim and monitoring their activities – often through their mobile phone or social media and online accounts – along with a host of other intimidating and intrusive behaviour, such as being sent unwanted messages, phone calls, cards and gifts, being followed or having someone loitering outside their home or work.
“I would urge anyone who has been the victim of this type of offending to report it to the police and seek support.”