Man jailed for abusing girl in bin store

A beast who abused a schoolgirl in a bin store has been jailed for 22 months.

James Gillies, then 21, plied the 14 year old with Buckfast Tonic Wine before forcing himself on her in the storage space, known to local youngsters as “The Cellar”, below a block of flats in Cumbernauld.

He also admitted being in possession of two knives in the common close of the home of a former girlfriend in Portal Road, Grangemouth in October last year and breaching bail by being there.

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The girl, who was picked up by Gillies in a Cumbernauld park at 4pm, did not return home until 5.30 the next morning, by which time her frantic mother had reported her to the police as missing.

Stirling Sheriff Court was told that Gillies gave the girl a whole bottle of Buckfast, which he bought for her in a local shop.

Prosecutor Cheryl Clark said the girl was with two friends, aged 12 and 14, when Gillies met her, and made it clear how old she was.

Gillies replied, “No way, I thought you were older.”

Later when they were alone in the bin store and the girl was drunk he kissed her, put his hand in her pants and abused her, and grabbed her hand and forced her to touch his own private parts.

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Later she disclosed to a support worker what had happened, and also told a pal, “James tried to rape me that night”.

Miss Clark said the girl’s mother had seen Gillies in the street and – aware that he had been in the bin store with her daughter and had bought her drink, but unaware he had forced himself on her – challenged him.

She shouted at him the morning after the incident: “What are you doing hanging about with 14-year-olds in bin stores buying them drink?”

Miss Clark said: “The accused made no reply, and walked off.”

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Gillies, when later arrested, insisted it had been only after the sexual encounter that he found out how old the victim was.

He told police: “I’m no a beast.”

Gilllies, now 23, of Cumbernauld, described on indictment as a prisoner in Low Moss jail, admitted sexually assaulting the girl and buying her drink.

The incident occurred in the bin store in Millcroft Road, Cumbernauld on August 23, 2016, and has taken two and a half years to be dealt with in court.

Sheriff Wyllie Robertson imposed the 22 month sentence, and placed Gillies on the sex offenders’ register for ten years.