A man who threatened to send sexually explicit images of a former partner to her parents before pushing her out of his car has appeared in court.

Luke Scott made the sickening threat during a heated argument over the phone while the woman was working abroad.

The 28-year-old’s relationship with the woman was on and off for several months before finally coming to an end when he pushed her out of his car following an argument, a judge heard.

Teesside Crown Court heard how the defendant never carried out the threat to send the images but his ex-partner would not have been aware of that at the time.

Shaun Dryden, prosecuting, said the couple’s relationship was strained when the complainant moved to Dubia to work but Scott managed to persuade her to send him some sexually explicit images of herself.

During one row, the defendant threatened to send them to her parents after hurling vile abuse at her over the phone.

Mr Dryden said they met up again in April last year but soon started arguing, resulting in the woman being pushed to the ground from his car.

“She ran away but he followed her in the car and pulled her back towards the car but released her when he noticed people watching nearby,” he said.

In a victim impact statement, the woman said she was now fearful to return home in case he tries to get in contact with her.

She said: “You found me at peace and left me in pieces. I don’t think I will be the same person again.”

Scott, of Buttercup Close, Hartlepool, pleaded guilty to sending malicious communications and common assault.

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Andrew Bousfield, mitigating, said his client had now moved on from the fractious relationship but accepts that his behaviour was upsetting and inappropriate.

Judge Howard Crowson said: “Your threat to send the parents images of her could only be done to cause distress. They were used as a tool to cause anxiety.”

Scott was made subject of a two-year community order where he must attend 15 rehabilitation activity requirement days and attend a Building Better Relationships course.

He was also made subject of a five-year restraining order.