Former Scout Master to pay hefty compensation for abusing young boysMonday, June 25th, 2012
A judge has ordered a former scoutmaster and abuser of boys in his care to pay a hefty compensation order, rather than sending him to prison.
The judge stated this will hit him harder than a spell in prison.
Seventy eight year old David McDonald has been ordered to pay a £32,000 fine and £16,000 compensation to his victims within 12 months.
Sheriff Lindsay Foulis sentenced McDonald with the fine and compensation order because there was a strong possibility he would be released from prison early on a home detention curfew, which would mean he would be out of prison in a few months. Subsequently the heavy fine and compensation order would hit him harder.
He said: “In my view, imposing a financial penalty, in all the circumstances, will have greater consequences upon you, compared to the imposition of custody, in as far as the rest of your days are concerned.”
The Sheriff told McDonald to sell his assets to pay the fine. Initially McDonald offered to pay £60 per week, which would have meant he would need 44 years to pay the total amount.
The court heard McDonald had abused three boys as a scoutmaster during the 1960s and 1970s.
He told his victims they were receiving training for their first aid badges and he was showing them pressure points while he was carrying out sexual abuse.
Police began investigating McDonald when one of his victims broke down in front of his wife and told them about his ordeal.
The Sheriff said the victims had been left emotionally scarred by their ordeals.
He said: “In my view there is no question that at the time of these offences you knew what you were doing was a crime. These offences were serious.
“They involved the abuse of three teenage boys entrusted to your care as a scoutmaster, no doubt because their parents thought it was good for them to learn skills and experience camaraderie by being in a uniformed organisation.”
Though he admitted sexually abusing the children he said he had little recollection of the incidents.