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Tuesday, April 5, 2011

Man pleads guilty to threatening Singapore Airlines aircraft

A MAN has pleaded guilty to threatening the safety of a Melbourne-bound Singapore Airlines flight weeks after he was released from prison for making a hoax bomb call to the same airline.

Raymond Lawson, 37, today pleaded guilty in the Victorian County Court to threatening to kill a man on July 14, 2010, and to making a threat against the safety of an aircraft on July 15.

The threats were made weeks after he was released from prison having served 252 days for making hoax bomb calls to hospitals, police and Singapore Airlines.

In the earlier instances, Lawson, along with a friend, Joseph Bucek, had claimed to belong to a fictitious terrorist organisation.

On one occasion they claimed they had planted a bomb that would blow up Melbourne's Royal Children's Hospital.

And their threat to Singapore Airlines prompted a mid-air search of one of its aircraft.

Lawson was sentenced to 12 months' jail but was released soon after, having already spent 252 days in custody, with the remainder of his sentence suspended.The pair pleaded guilty to three counts of making a bomb hoax.

In sentencing the men on June 24, 2010, Judge Frank Gucciardo issued a stern warning.

"You come back to this court with anything resembling the type of offence that you have committed in relation to these matters and you can expect to spend a long time in jail. Do you understand?" he said.

In court today, Judge Gucciardo ordered Lawson remain in custody and reappear in the same court on May 3, when his pre-sentence hearing will continue.

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