A “NEIGHBOUR from hell” has been slapped with a three year non-harassment order and told he must stay away from a couple he continually put into a state of fear and alarm.

Craig Edwards, 43, from Helensburgh, appeared at Dumbarton Sheriff Court on Friday, November 3 for sentencing.

Edwards, previously of Ben Bouie Drive, committed a series of offences in August and September at his former home. He behaved in a threatening or abusive manner and put his neighbours into a state of fear and alarm by shouting, swearing and screaming offensive remarks on August 30.

He was put on bail at Dumbarton Sheriff Court the following day, with the special condition not to contact or communicate with his neighbours. But on September 13 he repeatedly shouted comments and swore at them, breaching bail.

Fiscal depute Craig Wainwright said: “The complainers were his upstairs neighbours. At midday on August 30 they heard Edwards shouting at them, such comments as ‘I hope you die a slow and painful death. I hope you die of cancer’.”

Police were contacted at 3.10pm and he was taken to Clydebank police office.

Then at 11.30pm on September 13 he was again shouting and swearing at his neighbours and police were again contacted.

The Crown moved for the sheriff to impose a non-harassment order as part of any sentence. “They require protection,” added Mr Wainwright.

Defence lawyer Brian McGuire said: “There are mental health issues. The long term plan is to have him re-housed in another area of Helensburgh. I would see the benefit of a deferred sentence rather than a fine.”

Mr McGuire said that the prison service recommended he be housed at Rosshead House in Alexandria because they took the view that he should not be in custody.

Sheriff John Hamilton said: “It is clear that you don’t have your troubles to seek. I am concerned about your situation.

“I will defer sentence for six months for you to receive treatment at Rosshead House and find more suitable housing accommodation.”

The sheriff imposed a three year non-harassment order and deferred sentence until May 9.

The sheriff also called for a supplementary report to be prepared on Edwards for his next court appearance.