Edinburgh crime: Former leader of Wolf Pack Hunters UK paedophile hunter group left Edinburgh residents terrified, court hears

Paedophile hunter group left elderly residents terrified during sting operation
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A Scots paedophile hunter group left residents terrified when they confronted an alleged child sex offender at his Edinburgh home, a court was told on Monday.

Gordon Buchan - former leader of the Wolf Pack Hunters UK - turned up at a block of flats in Edinburgh along with four unidentified colleagues to carry out an online sting. Buchan, 42, and the gang all had their faces covered and were wearing dark hoods when they challenged the unnamed man at his front door at the capital’s Carnegie Court in March 2018.

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Edinburgh Sheriff Court was told the flats housed mainly “elderly and vulnerable residents” as well as “families with young children”. Fiscal depute Matthew Miller said: “Mr Buchan is the leader of the group known as Wolf Pack Hunter UK. The group are an online activist group and are very active across central Scotland and are followed by around 150,000 people.

Gordon Buchan was the former leader of the paedophile hunters groupGordon Buchan was the former leader of the paedophile hunters group
Gordon Buchan was the former leader of the paedophile hunters group

“The aims of the group are to identify and expose people who engage in sexualised conversation online with parties they presume to be children. Around midday on March 3 2018 Mr Buchan attended at the locus with unknown parties connected to the Wolf Pack and they intended to confront a civilian witness who had been engaging in sexualised conversation online. It is unknown how Mr Buchan obtained the home address of the witness.”

The fiscal said the group confronted the man at his front door within the stairwell while shouting comments including “paedophile” and “you dirty f***ing paedophile”. The court was told the Wolf Pack Hunters conduct “caused a great deal of disturbance within Carnegie Court” and residents later described their behaviour as “intimidating” and “aggressive”.

Mr Miller added: “The group adopted aggressive stances and were pacing backwards and forwards. One resident told officers that the shouting from Mr Buchan and the group had woken him and he had been “extremely alarmed by what he heard”.

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The court heard the confrontation at the city’s Pleasance area was live-streamed to the Wolf Pack Hunter’s Facebook page and was viewed by thousands of social media users at the time. The police subsequently received several calls from shocked homeowners concerning the conduct of the five-strong masked gang and when officers arrived at the property Buchan was arrested and charged.

Solicitor Gordon Stewart, defending, said his client was no longer the leader of the hunter group following a previous court case where he had been given a conduct requirement banning him from having any involvement. Mr Stewart said the two-year community payback order had come to an end last year and there had been no breaches by Buchan.

The lawyer added Buchan “now accepts responsibility for his behaviour” and he “had not intended to get in to trouble himself” during the incident.

Sheriff Alistair Noble was told health difficulties prevented Buchan, of Maryhill, Glasgow, from carrying out unpaid work and decided to defer sentence to next month for reports to be prepared.

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Buchan pleaded guilty to conducting himself in a disorderly manner by attending at the property with others unknown and with their faces covered and did shout, swear, utter offensive remarks and place members of the public in state of fear and alarm and commit a breach of the peace at Carnegie Court, Edinburgh, on March 3, 2018.