A man summoned three judges to attend a community hall to go on trial over “crimes against the people” – in correspondence sent from Dundee.
The man, whose name is given on court papers as Robert Sproul, was convicted of behaving in a threatening or abusive way.
He denied breaking the law by booking out a community hall and sending sheriffs David Pender, Tom McCartney and Seith Ireland letters saying they were to attend the hall to go on trial for “crimes against the people of Great Britain.”
The 54-year-old – who says he does not use capital letters because it is “dog latin” and refers to himself as “the living man robert sproul” – went on trial at Paisley Sheriff Court alongside his co-accused, whose name is given on court papers as John Smith, 55.
Sheriff Pender, 69, previously took to the witness stand at the court, where he has presided for 24 years, to give evidence against the men, who are being referred to in court simply as robert and john.
The judge said he feared for his life after he and two colleagues received a document which “was a summons to attend a court hearing” at a Community Hall and read: “You are publicly charged with crimes against the people of Great Britain and an ongoing criminal conspiracy.”
He added: “It stated there was, apparently, a right to restrain my liberty and detain me, whether that was lawful or not. It seemed, on the face of it, very genuine.”
Sheriff Ireland and Sheriff McCartney also both gave evidence in the trial, which heard that robert, who is representing himself, was named as “the plaintiff” on the documents and had booked the community hall for the date and time specified in the summons – Clyde Community Hall, in Govan, Glasgow, on Sunday July 29, 2018.
In a no-case-to-answer submission, robert said: “There is no evidence to suggest I sent any letter.
“Whether or not I booked the hall, there is no crime – it’s not a crime to book a hall or to pay for a hall.
“There is no DNA, no fingerprints or any physical evidence to connect me to the documents – there is no crime.
“There is no evidence to suggest any crime.
“There is no case here to answer, there is no evidence, and the case should be dismissed without prejudice.”
Yesterday, Sheriff Mungo Bovey QC convicted both men of failing to provide their details to police, and convicted robert of behaving in a threatening or abusive way by sending the summonses to the sheriffs.
He deferred sentence on john, whose address was originally given on court papers as Kirknewton, but is now given as Portsmouth, until next year for him to be of good behaviour, telling him he will be admonished if he stays out of trouble.
But, after pointing out that robert had previously been sentenced to eight years in jail for drugs offences, he called for background reports ahead of sentencing and deferred sentence until next month.