A man who admitted shining a light at a police helicopter as it helped track an armed robbery suspect has been fined.

Richard Jones, of Wern Las in Rhos, appeared at Wrexham Magistrates Court on Tuesday morning.

The 34-year-old admitted that on April 10 he directed a light at an aircraft in flight so as to dazzle or distract the pilot.

Justin Espie, prosecuting, told the court that on the evening of the offence, police were engaged in searching for a suspect involved in an armed robbery incident which took place in Penycae.

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Officers on the ground were helping to locate suspects and a stolen vehicle, calling in a police helicopter to assist.

They were then contacted by the helicopter team to state that a light had been aimed at them from an address in Wern Las.

Bethan Jones, defending, said the offence before the court was an "unusual" one, but said the device used wasn't "a laser or anything of that nature."

It was simply a lamp, she said, and it having appeared to flash at the helicopter occurred when Jones was changing its settings.

District Judge Gwyn Jones said the harm was significant.

He handed down a fine of £160 and ordered the defendant to pay £85 in costs as well as a £34 victim surcharge.


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