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Last Updated: Wednesday, 19 December 2007, 17:40 GMT
Family ban for teenage tearaway
Richard Mullen (picture by PPA)
Richard Mullen threatened to kill police officers
A teenager responsible for a crimewave in Blairgowrie has been banned from seeing his father and brothers.

Richard Mullen was aged 15 when he shot a paintball gun at a school bus, promised to firebomb a police officer's home and threatened a disabled woman.

Sheriff Lindsay Foulis ruled that stopping Mullen seeing his family was the only way to save him from a life of crime.

The teenager's father has said he is shocked at the judge's order.

Mullen, who is now 16, appeared at Perth Sheriff Court in connection with 49 offences between 20 January and 18 October 2007.

After a lengthy discussion between his solicitor and the Crown he admitted 20 of the crimes and had not guilty pleas accepted for the rest.

His brothers and father are leading him down a path to Polmont and then to adult prison
Sheriff Lindsay Foulis

Sheriff Lindsay Foulis told the teenager he was being given a last chance to do something with his life as long as he agreed to stay away from Hugh Mullen Snr, David Mullen and Hugh Mullen Jnr.

"If there is any prospect of success in respect of this young man then he really has to cut ties with his father and brothers," Sheriff Foulis said.

He told Mullen: "When you leave this court today you are in no shape or form off the hook. I can potentially come down on you like a ton of bricks.

"This must be considered a last opportunity to avoid a life spent with significant periods in custody.

"His brothers and father are leading him down a path to Polmont and then to adult prison."

'Done nothing wrong'

The sheriff placed Mullen on probation for 12 months in relation to the offences he committed prior to his 16th birthday.

He was also tagged and placed on a curfew from 7pm to 7am every day for four months and ordered to live with his aunt in Blairgowrie.

In relation to the rest of the offences, he had sentence deferred and was granted bail on the condition he does not approach or contact his father or brothers.

The condition will remain in place until at least 30 January when he is due to be sentenced.

Mr Mullen Snr said: "I have done nothing wrong. That is shocking. It is ridiculous.

"You cannot keep a son away from his father."

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