May 2013

Pervert’s ban on dating his vile lover is lifted


A TWISTED paedophile has had a ban on him dating a fellow sex beast overturned.

Vile Gordon Sheppard, 45, claimed his Sexual Offences Prevention Order that stopped him seeing his lover James Braidwood breached his human rights.

Yesterday at Stirling Sheriff Court Sheppard, who lives near the town, got the order — which prevented him fraternising with other convicted sex offenders — amended so they could meet up.

Police Scotland said they agreed to the move.

The pair met in jail after Sheppard was given seven years in 2003 for taking snaps of himself abusing a boy and sending them to other perverts.

Braidwood, 55, served time for sexually abusing a boy and girl in the 1980s. Last night Scots Tory chief whip John Lamont branded the move “an insult to victims”.

June 2003

Seven years for net child abuser

A man who sexually abused a young boy he babysat and traded explicit pictures of him with other paedophiles has been jailed for seven years.

Gordon Sheppard, 35, of Dowan Place, Stirling, befriended the youngster’s parents and was even allowed to sleep in the child’s bedroom for more than a year before the abuse was uncovered.

Detectives said they were planning to interview Sheppard again in a bid to track down other paedophiles he was in contact with.

The victim’s parents condemned the sentence as far too lenient.

Outside the court, the boy’s father said: “My bairn has been put through a life of hell for him to get only seven years. He will probably only serve half.”

“Our son will be scarred of the rest of his life.”

Police were only alerted after the computer images were spotted by university researchers in Cork, Ireland, who work with the police to identify victims of child abuse.

They were sent to police forces all over the UK, including the Central Scotland force, where a police worker recognised some of the backgrounds to the pictures.

Detectives traced the pictures back to Sheppard and raided his home.

Computer images

The officers then had to tell the boy’s parents that their son had been repeatedly abused while Sheppard was supposed to be looking after him.

At the High Court in Edinburgh, Judge Leeona Dorrian QC said Sheppard was guilty of “a very significant breach of trust”.

She added: “The impact on the child cannot be calculated.”

Sheppard, a former computer worker, had pleaded guilty earlier this month to having sex with the boy and committing other indecent acts with him between July 2001 and July 2003.

He also admitted distributing indecent pictures of the youngster, who was only eight when the abuse began, between July 2001 and October last year.

The court heard that police found 1,844 pictures of the boy on Sheppard’s computer and that 912 images had been posted on the internet.

Sheppard’s lawyer, Ian Duguid QC, insisted his client had not befriended the youngster’s parents in order to gain access to the child.

He said the accused’s brother had become friends with the youngster’s parents and when he died, their friendship with Sheppard continued.

He eventually moved into the family home and ended up sleeping in the boy’s bedroom for more than a year.

“This wasn’t in some way the accused’s selection of a child to abuse in the sense that it was devious or pre-meditated,” Mr Duguid said.

‘Risk to children’

But the judge said she had to take account of a background report which indicated that Sheppard posed a risk to other children.

“It is clear from this report that the authors consider that you are at a risk of re-offending in the future,” she said.

The judge sentenced Sheppard to seven years for having sex with the boy.

She also ordered that he be supervised for 18 months following the sentence for distributing the images of the boy.

Sheppard was also placed on the sex offenders’ register.