A MAN who contacted his estranged wife in breach of a non-molestation order claimed an alleged threat was a misunderstanding.

Blackburn magistrates heard the victim heard Scott Craig say; "You are dead sweetheart."

But he claimed he said; "You are dead to me" during the call made after he discovered she had got engaged to someone else.

Craig, 30, of Troon Avenue, Blackburn, pleaded guilty to breach of the order.

He was sentenced to 18 weeks in prison suspended for 12 months and ordered to pay £115 victim surcharge.

Parveen Akhtar, prosecuting, said it was the third breach of the order.

"She has experienced a number of problems with him and obtained the non-molestation order to prevent him contacting her," said Miss Akhtar.

"On this occasion she received a phone call from someone claiming to be PC Keighley from Blackburn police station.

"At first she didn't recognise the voice but as soon as he made the threat in a different voice she knew it was him."

Gareth Price, defending, said Craig became aware his wife had got engaged even though they were still married.

"He accepts that he rang her and that was a breach of the order," said Mr Price.

"He says that when she confirmed she was engaged he said she was dead to him and not the threat that she perceived.

"He is struggling to manage the changes in his life."