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Jail for serial offender

A MAN from Lerwick who committed a string of offences including breaking into a Lerwick chemist to steal medication has been sent to jail for over two years.

Martin MacDonald, of Robertson Lane, was also given a 52-month driving ban when he appeared from custody at Lerwick Sheriff Court on Thursday for a number of traffic offences committed last year.

The 43 year old previously pled guilty to breaking into A.L. Laing’s chemist on the town’s Commercial Street on 15 October and stealing a quantity of tablets of the sedative lorazepam, while on bail.

MacDonald also admitted a charge of dangerous driving on Lerwick’s South Road on 13 April, which saw him drive at excessive speeds, repeatedly mount the pavement to overtake traffic, causing pedestrians to take evasive action, enter the opposing carriageway while there was oncoming traffic and drive around a roundabout in an anticlockwise direction.

He also appeared on a charge of being concerned in the supply of heroin at an address on Lerwick’s Ladies Drive between 8 and 18 November 2015, which he previously admitted.

Procurator fiscal Duncan Mackenzie said the supply charge related to MacDonald letting other people use his property in return for drugs.

A total of £875 was also seized by police from the man’s wallet, with the crown seeking forfeiture of the money.

In the break-in, MacDonald entered A. L. Laing’s through its front door and window. CCTV clearly showed him entering the premises and taking drugs, Mackenzie said.

The fiscal said the driving incident occurred at around 8.50am in the morning, with MacDonald not having enough patience to wait in traffic. It was lucky no one was “seriously hurt”, he added.

Defence agent Tommy Allan said the supply charge related to his client effectively being “used by others higher up in the chain”. “He was taken advantage of,” the solicitor said, adding that the substances were for his own use.

Allan said that MacDonald now accepts the driving charge was the result of some “appalling” work behind the wheel.

The solicitor went on to say that at the time of the offences his client had been going through a “chaotic” patch in his life. He said MacDonald’s behaviour has improved since then and that he is now on a new type of anti-psychotic medicine.

Sentencing the 43 year old, sheriff Philip Mann said MacDonald got into the drugs supply circuit off his own back. “I accept that you may have been taken advantage of, but you involved yourself in what could be regarded as a significant supply of drugs,” he said.

Sheriff Mann jailed him for a total of ten months and ordered the forfeiture of the money. He added on another nine months to MacDonald’s sentence for the break-in before giving him a further eight months and a lengthy ban for his “shocking piece of driving”.

The sentence of 27 months in total was backdated to when MacDonald was first remanded in custody on 17 October.