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Last Updated: Thursday, 21 December 2006, 17:10 GMT
Lifetime Asbo for capital beggar
Rose Street
Rose Street is one of the areas McKay has been banned from
A man dubbed The King of the Beggars in Edinburgh has been banned for life from city centre streets and shops because of his behaviour.

John Blair McKay is the first person in Edinburgh to be served with a lifetime Anti-social Behaviour Order (Asbo).

The 49-year-old is prohibited under the order from entering Rose Street, Castle Street and Princes Street, or he will be arrested.

He received the Asbo at Edinburgh Sheriff Court on 14 December.

McKay is also banned from shouting and swearing in and around the bus station at St Andrew Square.

This individual is well-known for making tourists and residents' lives a misery in the city centre
Willie Wills
Lothian and Borders Police

Officials said records of his unruly behaviour date from at least February 2004 and include complaints about his shouting, swearing, threats and assaults on pedestrians and workers.

On a number of occasions, McKay also brandished a weapon and made violent threats towards police officers and pub and restaurant staff.

Edinburgh City Council said it worked alongside Lothian and Borders Police to obtain the order.

'Feel safe'

Councillor Sheila Gilmore, Edinburgh's community safety leader, said: "Mr McKay's violent and threatening behaviour is not only completely unacceptable but it has made people fearful for their safety as they go about their business in the city centre.

"People should be able to feel safe when working, shopping or spending time in the heart of Edinburgh and not be subjected to the distress and alarm caused by individuals such as this."

Chief Inspector Willie Wills said: "This individual is well-known for making tourists and residents' lives a misery in the city centre.

"We hope this will go some way to improving the lives of people in the city centre."

Abusive city beggar is given Asbo
23 Dec 05 |  Scotland

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