Prosecutor found guilty of sending threatening messages to woman

December 2019

A lawyer in Aberdeen has been found guilty of sending threatening messages to a beautician after she announced her intention to leave his partner’s hair salon and work elsewhere.

David Wilkie-Thorburn, 52, an assistant procurator fiscal, sent a number of messages to Veda Rodrigues, 38, amid concerns of a staff walkout at his husband’s beauty salon.

Ms Rodrigues, a mother-of-four from India, had been renting space at the salon but said she would be moving next door, along with two other workers.

On April 7, Mr Wilkie-Thorburn sent her a message stating he was “head of prosecution in Grampian” and that he was “responsible for making prosecution decisions on immigration cases”.

Ms Rodrigues thought this meant he had the power to deport her.

At Aberdeen Sheriff CourtSheriff Ian Duguid found him guilty of sending a message “of a menacing character”.

David Moggach, defending, said the conviction would be “life-changing”.

Mr Moggach added: “This is a hugely traumatic conviction and a serious one for him.

“He is going to lose a well-respected job which provides him with a good income – it’s as serious as that.

“That is the consequence that will befall him.”

Fiscal Laura Mundell said Mr Wilkie-Thorburn had “exaggerated” the responsibilities of his role when he sent his threatening messages.

Sentencing was deferred until next month.

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