Duke of Edinburgh Award supervisor cleared over sex offences

A 54-year old man, who had been accused of committing sexual offences against 12 young girls and four women, over an 11-year period, has been cleared of all charges by a jury after a three week trial at Edinburgh Sheriff Court.

Friday, 5th July 2019, 4:24 pm
The 54-year-old appeared at Edinburgh Sheriff Court.
The 54-year-old appeared at Edinburgh Sheriff Court.

Peregrine Burgess from Peebles, who ran the "Pie and Chips" youth club at Leckie Memorial Church in Peebles and acted as a Supervisor for the Duke of Edinburgh Award Scheme, had pleaded not guilty to 18 charges for offences, alleged to have been committed between 2006 and 2017.

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The offences were said to have been committed during trips to beaches in East Lothian by youth club members and on hikes in the Borders for the Duke of Edinburgh Scheme.

Today (July 5) the jury of 11 men and four women found him Not Guilty, by a majority, of 17 of the charges and Not Proven on one.

Mr Burgess, who is a dietician at the Borders Health Board, was suspended after allegations of six offences at Galashiels Health Centre, Hay Lodge Medical Centre, Peebles, and a woman's home in Melrose.