Man jailed for having a petrol bomb outside Sighthill shops

Edinburgh Sheriff Court on Chambers Street.
Edinburgh Sheriff Court on Chambers Street.

A man has been jailed after he was caught carrying a petrol bomb outside an Edinburgh shopping centre.

When 35-year old Michal Gajewski was asked by police about a bottle in his possession containing petrol he told them it was a “Molotov Cocktail”.

His “joke” led to his arrest and appearance in Edinburgh Sheriff Court today when he pled guilty to being in possession of a petrol bomb at the Sighthill Shopping Centre in Calder Road, Edinburgh, on December 11 last year.

Fiscal Depute, Kim Schofield, told Sheriff Alison Stirling that Gajewski, a Polish national, had gone into the Artful Dodger public house about 1 pm, ordered and drank a pint, and then left.

Ten minutes later he returned, carrying a wine bottle, placed it outside the pub and walked away to a cash machine.

Meantime, a man going into the pub picked up the bottle and took it inside, placing it on the bar.

The Fiscal said the man asked the barman, George Brown, what it was and was told it was a petrol bomb, because he could smell petrol.

Gajewski returned to the bar, but was refused service and left. Mr Brown placed the bottle in the cellar and called the police.

Ms Schofield said the officers saw Gajewski walking in Sighthill Loan and he gave them his name and address.

When asked about the bottle of petrol, he told them it was a Molotov Cocktail and was arrested.

He later said he had been trying to start a barbecue with a friend, but when he could not get it to light, he had taken an empty wine bottle and filled it with petrol from a nearby petrol station.

Defence solicitor, Carol Gowans, told Sheriff Stirling that her client had been drinking heavily since a break-up with his partner and a lack of communication with his young daughter. “It was poor decision making that brought him into the criminal court. Before the break-up he had been working hard and contributing to the Scottish economy.”

Sheriff Stirling jailed Gajewski for 180 days.