Steven Thomson, 42, repeatedly punched a man he saw vandalising a campaign poster in Aberdeen.
A former soldier who assaulted a protester for vandalising a British National Party campaign poster has been fined £300. Steven Thomson, 42, claimed he had been making a citizen's arrest when he saw Stefan Knust defacing the poster in Great Northern Road, Aberdeen, on March 25 last year, in the run-up to the General Election. But Aberdeen Sheriff Court heard he chased Mr Knust up the road and used "brutal and excessive force", punching his victim several times on the head and body.
Sheriff Malcolm Garden ruled that Thomson, of Gibblestone House, Scalloway, Shetland, "went too far" in his treatment of Mr Knust, although he had substantial grounds to make a citizen's arrest.
Thomson, a former BNP member, claimed he had used "minimum force" and merely "grabbed" his 21-year-old victim, but the court heard that this was inconsistent with Mr Knust's injuries. Thomson claimed he and his son had been "guarding" the £1,600 poster after it was repeatedly targeted by vandals.
Mr Knust, 21, told the court the pair got out of a car and chased him along the Great Northern Road before assaulting him.
Thomson, who denied the charge of assault, said he was "shocked" and "disgusted" with the verdict and was considering rejoining the BNP. He added he planned to appeal against the sheriff's verdict. His son Gregor Thomson, 21, of Summerfield Terrace, Aberdeen, went on trial beside his father, but the case against him was not proven.