A sheriff has expressed his “horror” at learning a Fife man who had just been found guilty of sexually assaulting two young girls had twice previously been convicted of similar offences, once while he was on bail.
John Kelly McGarva, 71, faces a “substantial” jail sentence after Sheriff Alastair Brown told him: “You have been convicted of very serious sexual offences in relation to innocence.”
The sheriff described his behaviour as “monstrous” and, after hearing that McGarva had been convicted of similar offences against two young girls in 1999 and again in 2015, when he was on bail, he said: “I am appalled that a bail order did not prevent you from doing what you did.”
During the trial, the court heard that McGarva, of Flowers of May, Kinglassie, Lochgelly, was trusted by a victim’s mum because he reminded her of Santa.
McGarva was found guilty by majority of, on various occasions between September 1 and December 24, 1997 at Flowers of May Cottage, using lewd, indecent and libidinous practices practices and behaviour towards a girl then aged nine.
He was unanimously found guilty of, on various occasions between December 1, 2014 and July 28, 2015, at Flowers of May, Kinglassie, intentionally causing a girl aged between six and seven years, to participate in a sexual activity, while on bail.
McGarva was also unanimously found guilty of, on various occasions between December 1, 2014 and July 28, 2015, at Flowers of May and at East Brackley Lodge, Kinross, sexually assaulting a girl aged between six and seven years, while on bail.
The sheriff told him that no one who saw and heard one of the girls being interviewed or who heard what he induced her to to do could fail to be horrified.
Depute fiscal Vicky Bell told the sheriff McGarva had been placed on probation after the first offences in 1999, was sentenced to a community payback order for the 2015 offences and was still on bail for one of those while he had committed the most recent offences.
The sheriff said he was deferring sentence for a Tay Project report and a psychiatric report, and remanded him in custody.
He told the court that while he must take those reports into consideration before deciding on any sentence, an extended custodial sentence was a “very live option” and he was “considering a substantial prison sentence.”
Sentence was deferred until October 13.