A SERIAL sex attacker who raped a primary schoolgirl and molested four young girls over a decade has been jailed for more than ten years.
Michael McGowan inflicted a catalogue of abuse on the youngsters at several homes across the Capital which, a High Court judge said, would “haunt their adult lives”.
The 39-year-old paedophile repeatedly raped one victim after first attacking her when she was five.
Another girl had just celebrated her fourth birthday when McGowan started abusing her.
McGowan, of Kingsknowe Place, appeared from custody to be sentenced at the High Court in Glasgow yesterday after being found guilty by a jury in Edinburgh.
Judge Michael O’Grady, QC, sentenced him to ten-and-a-half years in prison and ordered McGowan to be monitored in the community for four years after release.
The judge told McGowan: “You have been convicted of an appalling catalogue of offences. For almost a decade you horribly exploited children.
“It is clear one girl was raped by you regularly. Another girl was four when you started abusing her.
“You have blighted their childhoods and the damage you have done will haunt their adult lives. You will continue to pose a real risk to children for years to come.”
The rape victim was abused by McGowan over five years.
The string of attacks on the five girls took place between 2002 and 2012 at a number of city addresses, as well as McGowan’s home in Kingsknowe.
Following yesterday’s sentencing, Detective Chief Inspector Alwyn Bell said: “After an extensive inquiry Michael McGowan was brought to justice, which has allowed the victims and their families, who have shown extreme courage throughout their traumatic ordeal, to recover from the devastating effects of these crimes.
“We welcome this sentence as it sends out a clear message that Police Scotland will not tolerate child abuse in any form and will rigorously investigate and pursue those who perpetrate such crimes.
“Victims and their families can also have confidence that their cases will be handled sensitively and compassionately.”
McGowan – who also used the surname “McGown” as an alias – was convicted during a trial of rape and four counts of lewd, indecent and libidinous behaviour against the other girls.