A man who brandished a bottle of paint thinner and a lighter as he threatened to burn pro-democracy demonstrators in Mong Kok was jailed for six months in Kowloon City Court yesterday. Ma Hei-yuk, 45, pleaded guilty to one count of behaving in a disorderly manner in a public place. Handing down the sentence, Magistrate Peter Law Tak-chuen said: "Your act was reckless and very dangerous. You could imagine serious harm could have been done to lots of people and the situation could have been out of your control. The consequences could have been horrible." But Law took into account the fact that the incident happened during the Occupy Central protests, and that there was no end in sight to the sit-ins at the time. "The incident took place on October 22 - the protest had been going on for some time. No matter where you stand on politics, this movement was causing distress and there was no light at the end of the tunnel," Law said. "I can understand that emotions were running high at that time." The magistrate said he had considered handing Ma a one-year prison term - the maximum sentence for the charge - but reduced it to six months after taking into account that Ma had admitted his guilt, his personal background and that of the case. Ma admitted he had taken a bottle of paint thinner to the Mong Kok Occupy site on the evening of October 22, saying that he wanted to teach protesters a lesson. He dropped the bottle of paint thinner, holding a lighter in his hand, and saying he wanted to "die together" with the people there, but he was subdued by bystanders. Ma was born on the mainland and is now a Hong Kong resident. He told the court he had been drunk and distressed by the civil disobedience movement that night after reading the news. He did not live in Mong Kok but said he wanted to teach the "troublemakers" a lesson. He wrote a letter to the magistrate yesterday, saying he had reflected on his actions and greatly regretted what he had done, and hoped he could be released soon. Bailiffs and police cleared the Mong Kok Occupy site on November 25, acting on court injunctions to remove obstacles blocking transport businesses, and ending some two months of occupation there.