A Tayside farm worker who posed as a schoolboy to groom a child online was recognised by the distinctive dagger tattoo on his arm which featured his own name.
Colin Smith, from Methven, pretended he was aged 14 as he sent explicit selfies to the “schoolgirl” but was unaware he was being duped by a paedophile hunter.
As well as being identifiable by his tattoo, one of the pictures he sent to his victim also showed a framed photo of a female member of his own family.
Fiscal depute Michael Sweeney told Perth Sheriff Court that paedophile hunter Jenna Hallasan set up an open Facebook page posing as a 14-year-old girl.
Mr Sweeney said: “This involved a profile photo of a young female. She did not add any friends, or add any content, leaving it open for individuals who may choose to add her as a friend on Facebook.
“On May 6 2018 a male by the name of Colin Smith added her on Facebook. Over the next few months they began speaking with each other.
“She stated to him that she was 14 years old. At one point the accused also stated he was 14 and from Scotland.”
Between those dates he sent four photos of his private parts.
He added: “The first two were sent almost immediately after the initial contact was made on May 6 2018. Within the images you could see distinctive tattoos on the accused’s arm and a framed photo of a female could be seen in the background.
“An image was sent on May 10 and during this communication he provided details of where he lived. In total there were 42 inappropriate chats, and on 10 occasions she indicated her age was 14.”
Ms Hallasan screenshotted the posts and created a package of information which was sent to Wolfpack Hunters UK and Catching Predators Online.
“These groups carried out a sting operation,” Mr Sweeney said.
“The accused was confronted by members of these groups on his doorstep.
“The police were then contacted and attended the property. They were provided with the documentation and carried out their own investigation.”
Colin Smith, 55, of Drumgrain Terrace, Methven, admitted that on various occasions between May 6 and July 26 2018 he sent various pictures of his private parts to Jenna Hallasan, thinking she was a 14-year-old girl.
Sheriff Alison Michie deferred sentence on Smith for the preparation of reports and he was granted bail with special conditions relating to his internet use.
His details were also added to the sex offenders register.