October 2021

Dumfries taxi driver jailed for abusing young boy he drove to school

A taxi driver who regularly abused a young boy he drove to school has been jailed for four years and eight months.

John Walls preyed on his victim starting when he was aged 11.

The married 59-year-old cabbie worked for a firm in the Dumfries area who had a contract with the council.

This involved Walls taking the boy to and from the child’s school and home.

Walls later admitted what he had done during a “family summit” with relatives. He was sentenced at the High Court in Glasgow on Wednesday.

Walls had previously pled guilty to charges of sexual assault and rape.

Lord Clark told him: “This was deplorable abuse which must have caused lasting distress for this vulnerable young boy.”

Walls, also of Dumfries, will also be supervised for a further three years on his release.

The crimes spanned between March 2016 and September 2020.

Prosecutor Kath Harper told how Walls targeted the child when they were alone in his taxi.

She added: “The boy has found it difficult to estimate the number of times this conduct occurred.”

When the victim moved school, Walls continued to keep in touch including on social media.

Walls would meet him in his taxi and stop at various places in Dumfries to again abuse him.

The boy’s mum eventually became worried when she clocked the pervert siting in his cab near her home

She later spoke with police before her son told a teacher he had been preyed upon by a taxi driver.

Lord Clark told Walls the jail-term would have been seven years, but for the guilty pleas.