A MAN who lost his job then made threatening phone calls that the “Belfast brigade” of the UVF had been paid £20,000 to put people’s “lights out,” Ballymena Magistrates Court was told.
Arthur Morrow of Brookfield Gardens in Ahoghill made the calls in connection with a firm in the mid-Antrim area earlier this year.
He appeared at court for sentencing in connection with two charges of improperly using a communications network to cause anxiety.
The court heard the firm said Morrow, an ex-employee, had made the calls.
The court was told the defendant took the action with the “intention” of getting his job back.
A defence barrister handed in a character reference to the court for the defendant whose date of birth was given as 1943 on the charge sheet.
The lawyer said Morrow had been 27 years with the company before losing his job and the incident before the court was “entirely out of character”.
She said the defendant’s health had “deteriorated”.
District Judge Nigel Broderick said Morrow’s offending had been “very unusual behaviour”.
He told the defendant: “You are a gentleman of mature years. You took a very adverse reaction to losing your employment”.
The judge said if there had been a sense of frustration there was “really no excuse” for what Morrow had done.
The defendant was given a three months prison term, suspended for a year.