Northern Ireland

Man jailed for Belfast doctors' surgery meat cleaver threat

A man who brandished a meat cleaver in a doctors' surgery has been jailed for four months.

Mark Johnston, 19, threatened one of the GPs at the practice in Belfast on Monday, prosecutors told the city's magistrates court.

He still had the butcher's knife when he was arrested later in the Donegall Road area.

Johnston, of Ebor Street, admitted two counts of possessing an offensive weapon in public.

Machete

The court heard he had told police he had the knife for his own protection because he was under threat from paramilitaries.

Johnston also admitted to having a machete in the Kilburn Street area of the city on 11 May.

He had been arrested at the time by police investigating reports of a noisy party and a man being armed with a hatchet.

His lawyer said: "They are not the type of weapons one would carry in relation to self-protection."

Jailing him for four months, the judge said the involvement of a doctor made the meat cleaver incident more serious.

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