BOSSES at the Sick Kids have moved to reassure parents after a former children’s nurse who worked at the hospital admitted possessing thousands of images of child pornography.
Stuart Lilley, 28, worked as a paediatric nurse in an intensive care unit at Edinburgh’s Sick Kids Hospital when it was discovered he had more than 6000 indecent images on his home laptop and extra hard drive.
Falkirk Sheriff Court heard yesterday that he was reported to police by his then girlfriend Judith Lyon, 25, after she found a disturbing picture of a toddler on his computer at their flat in Grangemouth. She contacted police, who arrested him at the hospital last August.
They later seized his computer and found that around 300 of the images on the computer were in the most serious category used to grade the crimes.
He was later charged and suspended from his job by NHS Lothian, before resigning.
Lilley, of Barrland Street, Glasgow, admitted that between August 8, 2010, and August 16, 2011, at his former home in Grangemouth, he had in his possession indecent photographs of children. He was sentenced to 200 hours unpaid work, and banned from being unsupervised with children or using a computer.
Sheriff John Mundy put Lilley on probation and the sex offenders register for three years.
Lorraine Glancy QC, defending, admitted that in many cases he would face a custodial sentence but believed it could be avoided in this case.
She added: “The main reason being that there were 111 real images, and more than half had been earlier deleted. Over 65,000 were cartoon images, if they can be described as that.
“In the vast majority of the pictures, no children were harmed by their production.”
Sheriff Mundy said: “I’ve taken into account what has been said on your behalf, and believe I can just – and only just – avoid sending you to prison.”
After the case was over, Lilley changed out of his suit and tie, and into a tracksuit and glasses to avoid a mob waiting outside.
As he dashed outside the courtroom he faced chants of “beast” from a group of around ten members of the public, some of whom had brought their young children along.
The NHS and the police have said there was no suggestion any patients in his care had been involved.
Lilley was suspended from working by the Nursing and Midwifery Council for 18 months when the allegations came to light. He will likely be struck off later this year.
Melanie Hornett, director of nursing at NHS Lothian, said: “We can confirm that Mr Lilley is no longer our employee having previously worked at the Royal Hospital for Sick Children for a short period in 2011.
“We would like to reassure the public that NHS Lothian takes child protection extremely seriously and has cooperated fully with police on this matter.”
Detective Chief Inspector Barry Blair, of Central Scotland Police’s Public Protection Unit, said: “Stuart Lilley was investigated for possessing a significant amount of indecent child images.
“We worked closely with our partners in NHS Lothian during this investigation to ensure no stone was left unturned in respect of his lifestyle and potential access to children.
“Following the inquiry, there was no evidence to suggest that he had carried out any of the abuse shown in the images.”