Murder plot victim cleared of trying to intimidate Strathaven florist

Murder plot victim Steven ‘Bonzo’ Peebles has been cleared of frightening a Strathaven florist by putting a tracker on her car.

It was alleged the 41-year-old, along with co-accused Allan Fraser, used the device to follow and track his victim’s movements.

The pair, both of Bishopbriggs, near Glasgow, were accused of a course of conduct which caused the woman fear or alarm between February 16 2018 and March 9 that year.

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But Peebles had his not guilty plea accepted at Hamilton Sheriff Court today (Thursday).

Fraser pleaded guilty to a reduced charge of acting in a threatening or abusive manner by removing the tracker.

Neither man appeared in court.

Solicitor David Kinloch said Peebles is self-isolating.

It had been alleged that on various occasions in Lesmahagow and Strathaven, both Lanarkshire, and elsewhere they placed a tracking device on the woman’s car to follow and track her movements.

But Aga Mathieson, prosecuting, conceded the Crown does not know who planted it on the car.

She said police officers were in the area on “a completely separate matter” when they saw Fraser under the vehicle.

Ms Mathieson told the court: “He was seen to remove an item that was later found to be a tracking device.

“The victim does not know Fraser and I understand he does not know her. She did not know about the device until the police told her.”

Defence agent Stephen Dryden said Fraser insisted he hadn’t put the tracker on the car and had merely been sent to remove it because it wasn’t working.

Mr Dryden explained: “He was running a car lock and security shop on the south side of Glasgow.

“He was contacted by a friend who asked him to attend at the locus.

“There was a tracking device that didn’t seem to be working and he was trying to see if he could fix it.”

The lawyer said his client didn’t know at the time why the woman’s movements were being tracked.

But he added: “The defence made investigations. It seems the woman’s husband had concerns about her faithfulness.”

Mr Dryden said Fraser’s previous convictions are only for minor traffic offences and suggested he could be fined.

But Sheriff Allan McKay said he was not prepared to deal with the matter in the accused’s absence.

Instead he deferred sentence until May 27 for a criminal justice social work report and an electronic tagging assessment.

Six thugs were jailed for a total of 104 years last May for plotting to murder Bonzo and four other men linked to the Daniel crime clan.

Ex-taxi firm boss Bonzo suffered terrible facial injuries when he was attacked near the M8 in Glasgow in May 2017.

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