Sentence delayed on prank caller who made terrifying phone threats

editorial image
Have your say

A JUDGE has delayed the sentencing of a serial prank caller who issued terrifying threats to a woman he telephoned at random.

Sakkir Choudhury was due to be sentenced at Sunderland Magistrates’ Court on Wednesday for sending a malicious communication.

But District Judge Roger Elsey asked for a further psychiatric assessment be carried out on the 30-year-old, who has in the past spent time in jail for the same offence.

Judge Elsey said delving into Choudhury’s mental health could be the only way to stop him re-offending.

On the last occasion in court Choudhury laughed out loud as the prosecution outlined the contents of his phone calls to a random woman in Devon.

In a series of late-night calls to Heather Robinson at the end of January, he told her he was watching her house and that he would kill her.

The next day, when Choudhury called again, Ms Robinson asked her housemate’s boyfriend to answer, and he too was threatened with death.

Choudhury, of Beechwood Street, Thornhill, has 23 previous convictions for making threatening or prank phone calls.

This week, he also admitted two public order offences committed on December 21.

On that occasion he had made obscene gestures to a woman at Brockley Whins Metro station in South Tyneside.

Willie Johnstone, defending, said: “There is a history of antecedents. I have sat here for long periods of time trying to get to the bottom of this type of offending. He becomes very upset when he talks about it. He has seen various medical experts and he is under the care of the mental health team at Cherry Knowle.”

Mr Johnstone said he has autism spectrum disorder and a personality disorder.

“The bottom line is that he hasn’t had a very good childhood. He is a very lonely man and doesn’t have a great deal of friends. He gets lonely and he gets distressed, that’s when he makes these phone calls. Various sentences have been tried, various orders. There is one good thing, when he was on a suspended sentence his compliance was excellent.”

Adjourning the case until May 27, Judge Elsey said: “He has been subject to substantial mental heath treatment before and I don’t see a breach of that, so he has the capacity to comply to prevent re-offending. If that doesn’t help, I don’t know what we will do.”