May 2012

OAP perv pays £16k in compo to victims

AN ELDERLY paedophile Scoutmaster was yesterday ordered to pay £16,000 compensation to his victims — in return for his freedom.

David McDonald, 78, was given a year to pay a £32,000 fine, on top of the sum in damages.

Sheriff Lindsay Foulis told McDonald, of Coupar Angus, Perthshire, he was imposing the financial penalty instead of a jail term because it would hit him harder in his final years.

McDonald admitted sexually assaulting three boys in his scout troop between 1968 and 1971.

The pensioner handed over three cheques to settle the compensation at Perth Sheriff Court yesterday and offered to pay the fine at £60 a month — over 44 years.

But Sheriff Foulis told him: “In my view, a financial penalty will have greater consequences compared to the imposition of custody.”

May 2012

Scoutmaster who abused young boys offers victims cash in bid to avoid jail

A paedophile scoutmaster has volunteered to hand over more than £16,000 to his victims in a last-ditch attempt to avoid being sent to prison.

David McDonald, 78, Coupar Angus, Perthshire told a court he had liquidated his assets and had handed over £16,230 to his solicitor which could be paid to his three victims.

A sheriff told McDonald, who subjected scouts to sexual abuse 40 years ago, that he could avoid a jail sentence if he was prepared to hand the money over.

After hearing how much cash the pensioner had available, Sheriff Lindsay Foulis ordered his solicitor to prepare cheques to be handed to the three middle-aged men.

He said he would make McDonald pay £11,000 to one victim who had been subjected to the most sustained course of abuse, and £2500 to the other two victims.

However, Sheriff Foulis deferred the final sentence in the case for two weeks to allow the cheques to formally clear into his victims’ bank accounts.

Sheriff Foulis told Perth Sheriff Court: “My primary concern is compensation for the victims.

“My primary concern is that the victims can receive some monetary recognition for what they have gone through. Thereafter I will deal with the imposition of a fine.”

The sheriff added: “He knew very well he was abusing the trust of the boys and their parents. There was planning and this was a calculated act on his part. This was a gross breach of trust.

“If he is going to avoid a custodial sentence then society demands a very significant alternative sentence.”

Sheriff Foulis said the victims had been left with significant “emotional baggage” as a result of carrying what McDonald had done to them secretly for more than four decades.

McDonald, a senior scout for several decades, admitted charges of sexually assaulting boys in his care.

The scoutmaster told the boys, aged between 11 and 15, he was giving them special training for their first aid badges and would show them “pressure points” before sexually assaulting them.

The court was told that the lives of McDonald’s victims had been blighted because of the abuse they had been subjected to in the late 1960s and early 1970s.

The victims, all now in their 50s, came forward after one of them broke down in front of his wife and told her what McDonald had done and police became involved.