A former ice cream man who subjected six boys to prolonged sexual abuse including rape has been found guilty of his sick crimes.
Predator Robert Gill (41), from Bo’ness, was convicted of 12 offences – four charges of child sexual assault, two counts of lewd, indecent and libidinous behaviour and taking and possessing indecent photographs of children.
Jurors at the High Court in Livingston yesterday also took less than two hours to find him guilty by a majority of two rape charges and two further charges of lewd, indecent and libidinous practices towards under-age boys.
Gill had denied the catalogue of child sex abuse charges spanning more than two decades, including the rape of two boys, who were aged just 13 and 14 at the time.
During his nine-day trial at the High Court in Livingston, his victims – some of them now in their thirties – were forced to relive the horrific abuse he subjected them to.
He was convicted of his sick crimes by a jury who took less than two hours to reach their verdict.
The former ice cream salesman – who ran a ‘Robbie’s Ices” van in Edinburgh for several years – earlier admitted producing and supplying cannabis and taking an indecent photograph of a 14-yearold autistic boy and posting it on Facebook after changing his plea.
During the trial the jury heard that Gill preyed on teenage boys in the west of Edinburgh between 1993 and 1996 before embarking on a second campaign of sexual depravity in Bo’ness between August 2010 and February last year.
When he moved to Bo’ness he grew cannabis and invited youngsters to his house with the promise of free cannabis joints. If they submitted to his perverted desires he would reward them with free drugs and cigarettes and even bought a motorbike for them to use at weekends.
One of his victims, who is now 15, said Gill threatened to kill him if he told anyone about the abuse.
Judge Lord Glennie ordered that Gill’s name be added to the Sex Offenders’ Register and remanded him in custody for reports until sentence on March 9.
Detective Sergeant Jon Pleasance of Edinburgh’s Public Protection Unit said: “Gill preyed on a number of boys who he plied with drugs and coerced in order to carry out horrific sexual assaults.
“I want to pay tribute to the victims who have shown absolute courage throughout the investigation and trial.
“Police Scotland treats all reports of sexual crime very seriously and, regardless of when the offences occurred, we will investigate thoroughly and professionally to support victims and bring perpetrators to justice.”