Football coach Craig Raeburn jailed for child sex abuse images

Craig Raeburn
Craig Raeburn

A FOOTBALL coach who was caught with hundreds of images showing children being sexually abused has been jailed.

Craig Raeburn, who coached youngsters at Cockenzie Star, kept the pictures and films on two laptops he kept at his home.

The 52-year-old, who was an NHS manager, was jailed for 14 months and placed on the sex offenders register for ten years following an appearance at Edinburgh Sheriff Court.

But Raeburn, from Port Seton in East Lothian, was cleared of performing a sex act on a 14-year-old boy at a church after the Crown accepted his not guilty plea. He was also cleared of abusing another boy.

Fiscal depute Naomi Warner told the court that police had confiscated two laptops and a hard drive from Raeburn’s home and discovered he had deleted many of the downloaded child abuse files.

But officers using specialist software had managed to recover most of the images and associated file names.

The coach, who is no longer connected with Cockenzie Star, was found to have collected more than 1400 child abuse images and a further 20 movies. Many of the images and movies were at the most serious end of the spectrum.

Ms Warner added that Raeburn, a first offender, also admitted to a charge of breaking his bail conditions.

Solicitor Andrew Mellor told the court his client had been sacked from his position as a practitioner services manager with the NHS due to the court case.

Sheriff Norman McFadyen said: “This is a serious case and you held a number of images of children over a significant age range and were involved in this activity over a significant period of time.

“I am satisfied there is no suitable alternative to a custodial sentence.”

Sheriff McFadyen also sentenced Raeburn to a five-year sex offenders prevention order when he is released, which includes banning him from having any relationship with children under 16 and owning any devices which can access the internet.

Raeburn pleaded guilty to downloading and possessing indecent images of children at his home address between November 1, 2012 and February 4 last year.

He also admitted to breaking bail conditions by contacting a teenage boy between February 5 and November 2 last year despite being ordered not to during earlier court hearings.