A MILLPORT man who was caught driving around early in the morning armed with a martial arts weapon and two knives has been spared a prison sentence.

Darren Bain had a set of metal nunchucks and a pair of lock-back blades in his Ford Fiesta when police detained him for a drugs search shortly after 8am.

Bain, 48, told the officers that he'd never used the Kung Fu weapon but that he 'would be prepared' to if the circumstance arose, a court was told.

The first offender pleaded guilty on indictment to unlawful possession of all of the items found during the stop and search on the morning of November 7 last year.

His not guilty plea to an allegation of failing to stop for the police was accepted.

Prosecutor Claire Rowan said: "Police on patrol observed a Ford Fiesta parked at the roadside which was then driven into another street where it stopped again.

"Officers spoke to the driver regarding other matters and detained the accused for the purposes of a drugs search.

"Two lock-knives were found in the glovebox, one had a 9.5cm blade and the other a 6.5cm blade.

"In a pocket at the back of the front passenger seat was a set of martial arts metal nunchucks."

Bain's lawyer said: "This is his first involvement with the criminal justice system.

"The background report indicates a history of drug addiction.

"His wife passed away a number of years ago and his life spiralled out of control.

"There is no suggestion that he has behaved in a violent manner in the past."

Bain committed the offences in Greenock.

Sheriff Andrew McIntyre said: "It is unfortunate for a man of your age to come before the court at this time in your life."

Bain, whom Greenock Sheriff Court heard lives with his mother at Millport's Maura Gardens, has been ordered to complete 150 hours of unpaid work within nine months as an alternative to prison.