Man had armour and knuckle-duster to evict tenants

Thomas Carroll was fined at Edinburgh Sheriff Court. Picture: Greg Macvean

Thomas Carroll was fined at Edinburgh Sheriff Court. Picture: Greg Macvean

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An ex-soldier was arrested after he turned up to help evict tenants from a flat while wearing body armour and a knuckle-duster.

At Edinburgh Sheriff Court today Sheriff Frank Crowe was told that ex-soldier 30-year old Thomas Carroll had been asked by the landlord of the flat to “help” with the eviction.

Sheriff Crowe commented that the landlord “could always have asked for police assistance”.

Carroll of Westforth Street, Anstruther, pled guilty to being in possession of an offensive weapon in Great Junction Street on June 21 last year. His defence solicitor, David Patterson, said Carroll had served with Royal Engineers for six years. After leaving the British Army, Carroll, he said, “had been head-hunted by the CIA to work as a Close Protection Officer in Iraq”.

After a number of years there, said Mr Patterson, Carroll returned home to Scotland, but was suffering from Post Traumatic Stress “having witnessed some terrible moments while serving in Iraq”. He handed the Sheriff a letter from his client’s doctor relating to his mental problems. The lawyer added that the body armour had been in Carroll’s wardrobe for a number of years.

Mr Patterson said Carroll was now teaching disabled children to ride horses.

Sheriff Crowe told Carroll that his behaviour had been “very thuggish”, but he took into account he was suffering from PTS. He told Carroll because of his early plea he would reduce the fine from £1000 to £750. Mr Patterson said his client would pay that at £250 a month.