A man who blamed his child victim after he subjected her to prolonged sexual abuse was jailed for five years and three months yesterday.
Anthony Clark, 74, repeatedly preyed on the girl more than three decades ago in Dundee.
The former Michelin tyre factory worker pled guilty to a sustained course of “disgusting sexual abuse” during a five-year period in the 1980s.
Lord Uist said: “Your abuse of her has had a serious and lasting impact over the past 30 years.
“Although you have admitted your guilt and thereby avoided your victim having to give evidence, you have blamed her for what happened. I regard that allegation as deplorable.”
Clark, formerly of Glenclova Terrace, Forfar, earlier admitted two offences of indecent behaviour and indecent assault committed between September 1983 and September 1988.
At the High Court in Edinburgh, Lord Uist told Clark if he had been convicted of the crimes after a jury trial he would have jailed him for seven years. “People who sexually abuse children must expect to receive long prison sentences when they are brought to justice, no matter how long that may be after the commission of the offences,” he said.
The court heard the victim originally disclosed the abuse she suffered from Clark in 1989 when she was a teenager.
A children’s charity was contacted and Clark was questioned by police but denied any involvement in the offending.
The victim reported him to police again in 2016.
Advocate depute Peter Ferguson QC said: “She gave a full account of the abuse she had suffered at the hands of the accused.”
Police began a further inquiry and in August last year Clark was interviewed again after declining the services of a lawyer.
Mr Ferguson said: “In the course of that interview the accused made certain detailed admissions of sexual conduct towards the complainer but attempted to suggest that it was all at her instigation.”
Defence counsel Neil Beardmore said Clark was a first offender who now suffers poor health.
Mr Beardmore said Clark has “a tendency of minimise his responsibility and a tendency to blame the victim”.
But the defence counsel added: “He does accept that what he did was wrong.”
Clark was put on the sex offenders’ register indefinitely.