September 2002 – A man who abducted and murdered a nine-year-old schoolboy while on release from prison after previous attacks on children has had his prison sentence cut by five years. 

Steven Leisk, 39, was ordered to spend a minimum of 25 years in jail when Lord Philip sentenced him in 1997 for the murder of Scott Simpson

January 1999

Child killer attacked in jail

A paedophile jailed for the murder of a schoolboy has been injured in an attack by another inmate.

Steven Leisk, 34, needed stitches after the attack at the high security wing of Peterhead Prison, in north-east Scotland.

Leisk, who was jailed for life for the murder of nine-year-old Scott Simpson in Aberdeen in July 1997, was pressing clothes in the laundry when the attack happened.

The former soldier, who will now be eligible for parole in 15 years, took the boy from a play park near his home in Aberdeen, strangled him and left his body in the grounds of the nearby university.

Prison officers intervened to halt the attack on Leisk, who was repeatedly kicked and punched in the face.An official said: “Leisk received facial injuries but the wardens’ quick interception certainly saved him from more severe damage.”

November 1997

Sex offender given life for child murder

A serial sex offender was jailed for life yesterday for strangling a schoolboy while under the supervision of a local council.

Steven Leisk, 34, will serve a minimum of 25 years in jail after the judge at the High Court in Aberdeen told him he represented a danger to the public.

Leisk pleaded guilty to the abduction and murder last July of nine-year- old Scott Simpson, whose body was found four days later in the grounds of Aberdeen University. He had been strangled with a scarf.

Scott was playing football with friends in a park near his home in the city when he was approached by Leisk, who gave him a roll-up cigarette and a note that read: “Hi kid. If you want some of the latest megadrive games or any computer games, £5 each, follow me.”

The boy showed the note to two girls and told them he would be back in 20 minutes, Colin Boyd QC, prosecuting, told the court. Scott’s parents reported him missing that evening, and Grampian police mounted a huge search. Mr Boyd said police failed to find Scott’s body the following day despite searching the lane in which it was eventually found.

“Also of concern is the fact that the social work department who were supervising the accused’s release on licence were aware that the accused was residing directly opposite the place where Scott was last seen alive,” Mr Boyd said. “They took no steps to convey that information to police.”

Leisk, who led police to the lane after he was arrested, had four previous convictions for sex offences. He also admitted assaults on two 14-year- old boys earlier this year.

Leisk, who was abused as a child and was an army medical orderly in the Falklands, according to his defence counsel, was arrested after a relative telephoned police. He told detectives that he strangled Scott by mistake while trying to muffle his screams: “I just panicked. I told him to stop the noise.”