May 2017: Watson has now been released and is living in Carluke

November 2011

Rapist jailed for six-year term

Brandon Watson - Blantyre

A 20-YEAR-OLD man who raped two girls, aged 14 and 15, and who was behind a series of other sex assaults using social networking sites, has been jailed for six years.

Brandon Watson was caught after a possible victim alerted the Home Office’s ChildExploitation & Online Protection Service (Ceops) and Strathclyde Police launched an operation into his predatory behaviour on the internet before arresting him.

Yesterday Watson, of Blantyre, South Lanarkshire, was also put on the sex offenders register at the High Court in Edinburgh after pleading guilty to:

* Two offences of rape against two female children aged under 16

* Seven other sexual offences involving four girls under 16 which included grooming the girls online for sex

* He also admitted storing indecent images of children.

Sentencing, Lord Matthews told Watson that his conduct “justifies categorising you as a sexual predator” and added that he was a danger to young females

It emerged that one of his victims had attempted suicide and the 15-year-old he raped had subsequently been treated in a psychiatric unit.

Detective Inspector David Tassie, the senior investigating officer, said: “Thanks to one brave girl who raised the alarm via a social networking site, this sexual predator has been brought to justice.”

The inquiry hired a forensic psychologist to compile a report on the way Watson had manipulated the girls, he said.

Mr Tassie added: “Unfortunately, there are sexual predators like Watson, who use the internet to commit crime.

“I cannot stress enough how important it is for parents and guardians of children to know what it is they are doing online and who they are speaking to.

“Watson is off our streets and out of harm’s way for now, however, we cannot, and should not be complacent.”