A peeping tom who used a spy camera to take intimate photos of a woman has been ordered to stay away from children and playparks.
Convicted sex offender Brian Cocker used a remote device attached to his victim’s clothes, which he operated using a smart phone app.
The secret snaps were found by police when they checked Cocker’s mobile phone during a unannounced Mappa (Multi-agency Public Protection Arrangement) visit at his home in Perth.
Cocker was also caught with child abuse images in a folder marked “Candid Teens”.
The 36-year-old was spared jail when he appeared at Perth Sheriff Court, having previously admitted possession of the indecent images over an eight-month period.
He also pled guilty to a charge of voyeurism.
Public safety risk
Sheriff Jennifer Bain KC told him: “I note from the reports before me that you are at medium risk of sexual reoffending.
“You will have been made aware that a custodial sentence was at the forefront of my mind.
“It is however noted that a period of post-release supervision is unlikely to provide sufficient time for you to undertake the full Moving Forwards Making Changes programme and that means you will not be able to address your risk of repeat offending.
“And that has a direct impact on public safety.”
The court imposed a Sexual Harm Prevention Order and told Cocker to engage with the Tay Project, a specialist sex offenders programme run by Dundee City Council.
He was also told not to interact with children or enter playparks as part of a series of conduct requirements.
The court also impose restrictions on his phone and internet access.
Cocker will stay on the Sex Offenders Register for three years.
His solicitor Linda Clark said: “He has been engaging with Stop It Now programme of his own volition, attending 30 sessions on a voluntary basis.
“He has expressed significant regret and remorse.”
She said: “Mr Cocker has a previous conviction for similar behaviour from 2014.
“For 10 years he has managed not to engage in that kind of offending.
“He appreciates that had the previous case been more recent, a custodial sentence would have been inevitable.
“But it has been 10 years and there are alternatives available.”
Perth paedophile had hidden spy camera pics
Cocker was first placed on the Sex Offenders Register in 2014 for grooming a 15-year-old girl for sex.
He plied the youngster with alcohol during “frequent” sessions, despite knowing she was under-age.
He served a 10-month jail term for the offence.
The court previously heard officers carried out a routine but unannounced visit in July 2021.
Cocker spoke to officers in the kitchen and freely handed over his mobile.
Investigators found a folder named “Candid Teens” which contained several child abuse images.
The children depicted were as young as 14, fiscal depute Elizabeth Hodgson said.
Officers then discovered what appeared to be spy cam photographs of a woman who was known to Cocker.
Cocker admitted that between April 20 and July 19 2021 at an address in Perth he operated equipment beneath the woman’s clothing with the intention of enabling himself to observe her genitals, buttocks or underwear.
He made attempts to photograph the woman’s genitals without her knowledge or consent.
Previous offence of grooming child
The court was previously told how Cocker groomed his 15-year-old victim after contacting her through Facebook to congratulate her on the birth of her baby.
He continued to see the vulnerable youngster, who was living in foster care at the time, despite being warned off by her mother.
It was only when the girl moved away she felt able to report him to police.
Cocker told the court he was depressed after being dumped by his partner just weeks after the birth of their child.
He sobbed uncontrollably as he was jailed.
Sheriff Lindsay Foulis told him: “Young women require to be protected.”