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Sentence deferred on historical underage sex case

A MAN from Doncaster who admitted a child sex charge relating to a teenage girl when she was under the legal age of consent in the late 1980s and early 1990s has had his sentence deferred.

Neil Bolton, of Norfolk Avenue, Bircotes, previously pleaded guilty to using lewd, indecent and libidinous practises and behaviour towards the girl at a Lerwick address on various occasions or between 14 March 1989 and 13 March 1990 and repeatedly sexually penetrating her.

Procurator fiscal Duncan Mackenzie told Lerwick Sheriff Court on Wednesday that the complainer was 14 when she began a relationship with the man, who was aged 21-22 when the offences were committed and is now 50.

“They were aware of each others’ ages,” according to the fiscal, who went on to say that the relationship developed a sexual element.

The relationship ended a couple of months after the man was caught with the girl by his own mother, who expressed concern about the age difference.

The offences came to light in 2015 and Bolton initially denied “knowing her at all”.

Sheriff Philip Mann questioned if there were any specific reasons why there was a delay in the incidents being reported.

“Clearly there are a variety of reasons why victims will disclose a number of years after the event,” Mackenzie said.

Defence agent Tommy Allan said the offences “clearly happened some time ago”.

He said his client had fully co-operated with the court process since admitting the charges.

Sheriff Mann said the law required him to seek criminal justice social work reports prior to sentencing.

The case was deferred until 30 August, with the sheriff noting that due to the type of offence Bolton will only be able to be placed on the sex offenders’ register after he is sentenced.