A Kirkcaldy man who was caught sending vile sexual messages by an online paedophile hunter group has been jailed for two years.
William Scott appeared at Kirkcaldy Sheriff Court after previously admitting sending inappropriate communications to a decoy posing as a 12-year-old girl.
The 45-year-old initiated contact with the profile on a website called Waplog on January 12 and was told the “girl” was called Lauren and lived in Manchester.
Despite being told her young age immediately, Scott continued to ask her sexual questions and sent her images over an eight-day period.
He was later confronted outside his former home on Cumbrae Terrace by members of Groom Resisters Scotland before being arrested by the police.
At a previous hearing, the court was told how Scott had made contact with the profile of the decoy who was pretending to be a child.
Fiscal depute Jade Doig said: “On January 12 2018, the accused contacted the decoy and said ‘hello there sexy’. The decoy replied ‘Hi I’m Lauren. I live in Manchester. I’m 12 wbu (what about you)?’.
“Despite clearly stating her age, the accused continued to engage in sending messages of sexual nature, asking about her underwear. He also asked the decoy if she would engage in sexual acts.”
Defence solicitor Martin McGuire told how his client had lost both his home and his relationship following his prosecution.
He added Scott had faced “problems” with fellow residents at a homeless accommodation unit after the nature of the proceedings were uncovered.
Sheriff Jamie Gilchrist QC ordered Scott, who has three previous convictions of a sexual nature, to spend two years in custody.
The pervert was also placed on the sex offenders register for 10 years.
Sheriff Gilchrist QC said: “This is a very serious matter.
“Clearly, from the narrative, you believed you were communicating with a 12-year-old child when you sent the messages and the images that you did.
“That has to be regarded as a serious offence aggravated by the fact that you have previous convictions, albeit it of some age, for offences of a sexual nature and more than one of them.”
He added that Scott would have been given a three year sentence had he not pled guilty at an early stage.