A JAIL sentence hangs over a man who brandished a Samurai sword when vandals attacked his Chesterfield home.
Witnesses saw Armando Cervi with the weapon after two youths set about wrecking his garden fence, town magistrates heard.
A passing bus driver told police he saw youths pulling at the wooden fence and then a man emerged from a house carrying a large sword.
A 15-year-old boy stated Cervi walked towards the vandals holding the 3ft-long ceremonial sword out in front of him and swung it around when he was close to them.
He then went back inside his home and the youths carried on trying to break the fence.
Fernando Rodrigues, prosecuting, said: “An off-duty police officer in a vehicle saw the defendant brandishing the sword towards the two males, who were not backing off.
“He was pointing it at the males and he appeared agitated.”
Cervi, aged 39, of Old School Lane, Calow, was convicted of possessing a blade in public on March 25 last year.
He was handed a 20-week jail term, suspended for a year, and a one-year probation supervision order, with £300 costs.
Kevin Tomlinson, for Cervi, said a Samurai sword was never found by police.
Cervi maintained the alleged weapon was actually part of a washing line pole and he found the conviction hard to accept.
Mr Tomlinson said: “Two unknown males were pulling down his garden fence and trashing it and throwing pieces of broken wood at a window.
“They were never located by police and did not report the incident in which they were confronted by Mr Cervi, probably because they were likely to find themselves before the court for wanton vandalism.
“His mistake was going out to confront them instead of calling police.
“There is no evidence he went to strike anyone and he has no history of violence.”
Mr Tomlinson said it was Cervi’s only conviction since 2003 and he had kept out of trouble in the year since the offence took place.