Scottish oboist, 18, pleads guilty to child abuse

A small, personal tragedy in a morass of public prosecutions. Full story on BBC Glasgow.

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  • For Mr Brandon-Turner’s victim this is doubtless a great tragedy which will very probably continue to affect her for many years to come. I find it very hard to believe that a boy of 13 could have been unaware that engaging in sexual activity with a child of 6 constitutes an offence contrary to the laws of Scotland (as well, of course, as being a morally despicable act likely to cause considerable suffering to another person). It is clearly not normal for a boy of 17 (who, physiologically, would resemble a more or less fully developed adult) to be sexually interested in a girl of 10 (who would show little, if any, evidence of having begun puberty). His explanation that he was ‘experimenting’ would perhaps seem more plausible had he not committed these offences ‘about four times a month’ over a period of four years, which amounts to nearly 200 separate incidents. Since some of the offences were committed after the coming into force of the Sexual Offences (Scotland) Act 2009 on 1 December 2010 he has presumably admitted an offence of rape of a young child contrary to section 18 of that Act, for which he would be liable to receive a sentence of up to life imprisonment.

  • Like Alexander, I find it difficult to believe that someone who is aged 13-17 would be completely unaware that what he was asking the little girl in question to do was not wrong.

    How talented he is or is not as an oboist is immaterial. There are many 18 year olds who may have a future career in an international orchestra. This does tend to get sieved out a bit once they have had a conservertoire education. It does not make it right for them to go around insisting that little girls perform sexual acts with them – far from it.

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