‘Vietnam’ horror


A Scottish man who held a Limavady family hostage in their own home after a drink and drugs binge said he thought he was in Vietnam, a court has heard.

Robert John Fleming, of Sperrin Road in the town admitted a total of eleven charges which were committed on November 12, last year.

They include aggravated burglary, false imprisonment, making a threat to kill, arson and common assault.

The 22-year-old also admitted criminal damage and possessing a class B drug.

Derry Crown Court heard that Fleming’s mother phoned the police to say that she thought he was acting in a ‘volatile and erratic manner’.

Police called to Fleming’s house but he had left and shortly afterwards the Fire Service reported a shed on fire in a nearby street and a CCTV camera pulled off the wall.

Fleming entered a neighbouring house with two metal poles taped together and pushed the owner.

He stated he had a gun and was going to kill everyone in the house.

The family were said to have been “terrified” by the incident, in which Fleming set fire to a flycatcher and attempted to set fire to curtains.

The homeowner struggled with Fleming and was punched in the face. The 22-year-old also attempted to push the man down the stairs.


Judge Piers Grant said that the incident had an effect on the injured parties and thery were left in “considerable distress” for a period of time.

He said that Fleming claimed to have been hallucinating at the time and added: “You thought you were in Vietnam and that someone was going to get you.”

Judge Grant said they were “very serious offences’”and the drugs and alcohol consumed by the defendant “were no excuse for his behaviour”.

The judge imposed a determinate sentence of three years, 18 months of which will be spent in custody with the remaining 18 months spent on licence