A 33-year-old man has been charged with the extortion of £6,000 by threatening to make public that another man was a sex offender.
Kevin Slater, of Balmoral Court, Carlisle, pleaded not guilty to committing the offence in Dumfries on various occasions during an 18 month period to January this year.
He also denied threatening to harm the other man if he did not give him the money or if he reported him to the police.
Slater also denied behaving in a threatening manner at the house in March in company with another, repeatedly banging on the door and looking through the letter box and failing to leave when requested.
In addition, Slater denied that knowing the man had reported the theft of money he attended at the house with intent to persuade him to withdraw his police statement and attempted to pervert the course of justice.
Trial at Dumfries Sheriff Court has been set for January.
■ A court has heard how an operation involving revenue and customs authorities snared a motorist on the M74 carrying 80,000 non-duty paid cigarettes.
Sofan Zaki was driving a vehicle north from Birmingham when the trap was sprung near Johnstonebridge and he was found in possession of cases of the cigarettes believed to be of a Polish brand.
And depute fiscal Marion Hodge told the court at Dumfries, that he had claimed to have paid £4,500 for the cigarettes which he was going to sell to Polish shops in and around Aberdeen.
In the dock, Zaki, of Faulds Gate, Aberdeen, admitted knowingly carrying the non duty paid cigarettes in February last year and defrauding the authorities of £25,640.
The fiscal depute added that it seemed he had some knowledge that the cigarettes were available in Birmingham.
SolicitorVivienne Caldwell said Zaki regularly travelled to Birmingham and did not intentionally visit the city to get the cigarettes … he simply took a chance when offered cheap cigarettes.
Sheriff Brian Mohan warned Zaki that it was a serious offence but he would give him the chance of an alternative to custody and made him the subject of a community payback order with a condition he carry out 180 hours unpaid work.
■ A Moffat woman has been accused in court at Dumfries of assaulting a woman at a Lockerbie store.
Sheila Johnstone, 57, of Well Street, pleaded not guilty to struggling with the other woman at the Original Factory Shop at Lockerbie in May, causing her to fall to the floor and while she was there kicking her on the body.
Trial has been set for 26 October.
■ A man who made threatening remarks to his ex-partner has had his sentence at Dumfries Sheriff Court deferred for six months and warned to be of good behaviour.
Craig Green, 35, of Sydney Gardens, Lockerbie, admitted behaving in a threatening or abusive manner towards the woman on September 26.
The court was told that the couple had been apart for about nine years but still kept in contact and had been at the front door to pick up a passport.
There was a brief conversation between his current partner and his ex following which he became verbally abusive.
Sheriff Brian Mohan deferred sentence to March 21.