East Lothian crime: Father took naked picture of daughter and admitted assaulting her in online sting operation
Dad admitted to undercover police officer that he abused his own daughter
An East Lothian father took a disgusting naked picture of his daughter and sent them to who he believed was a fellow paedophile, a court was told last month.
The man was in contact with an online account he thought belonged to a child abuser and admitted he had previously sexually abused the child before adding his conduct had become difficult due to his wife possibly finding out. The dad, who lives in a county town, was subsequently caught out in an online sting after the man he was messaging turned out to be an undercover police officer.
The offender pleaded guilty to charges of taking his daughter’s picture while she was naked and attempting to distribute the image on a date between 2020 and 2021 when he appeared from custody at Edinburgh Sheriff Court last month.
Sheriff Kenneth Campbell KC told the depraved father, who cannot be identified due to legal reasons, he was facing a jail term when he returns for sentencing later this month. Previously the court was told how the National Crime Agency contacted Police Scotland to inform them the accused had been identified during one of its operations.
Fiscal depute Gillian Koren said the operation was carried out “in relation to child sexual abuse and exploitation” and an undercover officer was deployed to pose as an adult male with an interest in children under the age of 14. The court heard the officer made contact with the accused on the Kik messenger service and the father boasted he had access to a child, namely his own daughter.
The dad sent the officer an image of a child’s bed with a pair of pants lying on it which was “provided as proof of his status as a father with access to a child.” The court heard the man then agreed to send a photo of his child from the waist down.
When quizzed by the undercover officer about how old the child was, the East Lothian dad replied she was just six years old. He also told the officer he “used to [abuse the child] when she was younger” but this was now trickier due to “my missus”. The dad’s county home was raided by police under a warrant and he was arrested.
His partner subsequently told police the man was “very private with his phone and nobody was allowed to use it”.
Solicitor James McMackin, defending said his client’s conduct was “clearly a very disturbing matter” and added the man had “no contact” with his family since his arrest.
Sheriff Campbell KC remanded the man in custody and placed him on the sex offenders register for a term still to be determined. Sentence was deferred to later this month for social work reports to be prepared.