Thugs pretend to pay debt before assaulting woman in Tranent

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TWO thugs assaulted and threatened a woman with a knife moments after convincing her that they were going to repay a debt.

James Ferguson, 29, and Yvonne Mackie, 42, attacked Claire McAulay in a house in Tranent, East Lothian, on July 5 this year.

The High Court in Edinburgh heard Mackie repeatedly punched her on the head and body. Ferguson then held a huge kitchen knife to McAulay’s throat and threatened her with violence.

Ms McAulay, also of Tranent, avoided serious injury – but later told police what happened.

Ferguson and Mackie, of Coalgate Avenue, Tranent, pleaded guilty to assaulting Ms McAulay to her injury.

Ferguson, a prisoner of HMP Edinburgh, also pleaded guilty to four further charges of assault to injure and robbery.

Lord Uist deferred sentence to January 22.