Shopping mall sex pest avoids jail sentence

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A sex pest who put his hand on a young girl’s backside as she walked through a busy shopping mall has avoided jail.

Andrew Angus groped his unsuspecting victim in Falkirk’s Howgate Centre on March 19.

The pervert also ‘chatted up’ three other innocent youngsters in a shop that day before being arrested.

At Falkirk Sheriff Court last Thursday the 45-year-old was placed on a supervised community payback order for three years as a direct alternative to being sent to prison for his shocking behaviour.

Angus, from Haddow Buildings, Camelon, will also complete 200 hours of unpaid work in 12 months and attend the Scottish Government’s Moving Forward: Making Changes treatment programme for adult male sexual offenders considered as representing a significant risk of committing similar offences in the future.

Angus had admitted sexually assaulting a girl under the age of 13 by touching her on the buttocks and conducting himself in a disorderly manner by approaching three other girls under the age of 12 and engaging them in innappropriate conversations. He had his sentence deferred for background reports to be prepared by social workers.

In court his lawyer admitted: “He is clearly a very mixed up person who has been causing problems in the community. He is ashamed and absolutely disgusted with himself.

“This is someone clearly and desperately in need of assistance. He knows he needs help and wants help which would be in his and the community’s best interests.”

Urging a non-custodial sentence, the lawyer claimed: “He will fully comply with anything that’s put to him.”

Sheriff Derek Livingston also placed Angus on the sex offenders register for five years and told him he cannot have any contact with any female aged 17 or under during that time without the approval of social workers.

The sheriff warned him: “Any breach of this order will mean your immediate arrest and the alternative imposed.

“I’m placing you on a community order not because I don’t think you don’t deserve to go to prison but because this order is more appropriate because you would not be in custody too long anyway.”