Man caught with knuckleduster in underwear after mass riot

Omar Bhatia was also wearing shin guards when he was arrested in Glasgow last September.

A man was caught with a knuckleduster in his underwear believing he would be confronted by protesters with hammers.

Omar Bhatia was also wearing shin guards as well as carrying a bag of leather arm coverings and a balaclava in Glasgow city centre last September.

The 34-year-old carpenter told police that he had the items as protesters were carrying “hammers last Friday”.

This was in relation to a mass disturbance in the city’s Govan area involving an Irish republican march and loyalist demonstrators the week before.

On Wednesday, the first offender pleaded guilty at Glasgow Sheriff Court to the unlawful possession of a knuckleduster in the city’s Clyde Street.

Prosecutor Mark Allan told the court: “He told police of a likelihood of a protest in the area and stated that he heard they came with hammers last Friday.”

Bhatia was arrested and taken into custody where a knuckleduster was found in his underwear.

Clare Ryan, defending, said: “It was completely idiotic of him to dress in this fashion.

“This was for him to be protected against any assault but he has no record.

“There is no suggestion he would be involved in any behaviour that would relate to a breach of public order.”

Sentence was deferred until next month for background reports by Sheriff Joan Kerr.

Bhatia, of the city’s Govanhill, had his bail continued meantime.

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