July 2004

Officer fined over internet porn

A police officer has been fined £500 after being found guilty of downloading hundreds of child pornography images.

Hamish Tocher, 46, was charged after his wife Lesley complained to the police about his actions.

He was suspended from Tayside Police in June 2002 and has now resigned from the force.

At Dundee Sheriff Court, Tocher was placed on the sex offenders register for five years. The sheriff said he posed no danger to the public.

Deleted files

An extensive search by police forensic experts found 374 sexually explicit images of children had been viewed on Tocher’s computer at his Dundee home between 16 March and 14 June, 2002

Mrs Tocher, who has been married to the former sergeant for 26 years and still lives with him, told the court that she and her husband jointly surfed the internet for hard core adult porn, but was alarmed when she found images of children had been downloaded.

Tocher told the court: “After three or four months of having the computer, my curiosity got the better of me and I started searching for porn.”

“Every time I had finished, I would go offline and delete all the internet history files, because I didn’t want my family to see anything concerning pornography and I didn’t want an accumulation of information.”

Police forensic expert, Michael Dickson, had earlier told the court: ” It is very clear that the user searched for specific material and viewed it before consciously deleting it.”

In sentencing Tocher, Sheriff Roderick Macleod said that the likelihood of him reoffending was very low.