November 2015

Child abuse images pervert ‘to be freed to live in city’

tweed

A PERVERT jailed for possession of thousands of vile images of children is set to walk free today after serving half his sentence.

Terry Tweed, 66, a former Craigmillar community councillor, pleaded guilty to charges of obtaining the images of abuse over five years.

An informed source claimed Tweed has declared himself homeless and will be housed by the authorities “somewhere in Edinburgh” following his release from Saughton.

The well-known community campaigner was charged after police discovered the child abuse images at his Craigmillar home on Duddingston Row and last October he was sentenced to 26 months in prison

During court appearances it emerged he accessed nearly 18,000 indecent pictures between 2008 and 2013, almost 6000 of which were in the two most serious categories which the torture, rape and sadist acts against children

The high-profile local activist had for years been a vocal opponent of plans to shut down Castlebrae High School, which had been slated for closure amid dwindling rolls, and was often quoted in the media.

The informed source said: “He is definitely coming out today [Friday]. The city council is going to house him in Edinburgh.

“His case is being handled by the homeless unit. They are the ones who deal with things when someone declares themselves homeless.”

The council was unable to confirm whether Tweed would be re-homed in the city but stressed “public safety was of paramount importance”.

A spokeswoman added: “We work closely with partner agencies to ensure that Scottish Government guidance relating to the risk management of serious offenders is followed. There are robust processes and procedures in place to manage them.

“Within our multi-agency protection arrangements, the protection of vulnerable people is central to our approach.”

But Paul Nolan, a long-standing community councillor in the area, said he was “appalled” at suggestions Tweed would be living in Edinburgh. “He should be as far away from the city as possible,” he said. “I’m astonished that he is coming out without serving his full sentence.”

Tweed had admitted to offences spanning a period between December 2008 and December 2013.

He had been widely respected for supporting many local activities and projects over a number of years.

He held the post of secretary at Craigmillar Community Council, was a senior member at PARC Craigmillar – the body spearheading a huge regeneration drive – and a supporter of the “Save the Brae” campaign, which successfully rescued Castlebrae Community High from closure.

Speaking at Tweed’s sentencing, Sheriff Ross said: “Merely taking part in this process by looking at images and downloading them is to participate in an industry which destroys children’s lives.”

October 2014

School activist jailed for 18k child abuse images

A SCHOOL campaigner who downloaded nearly 18,000 indecent images of children has been jailed for 26 months.

Terry Tweed, 65, had accessed the child pornography over a five-year period with a third showing graphic images of abuse. Sheriff Nigel Ross told Tweed – a former Craigmillar community councillor and a key protester in the campaign to save Castlebrae High School from closure – that he had no choice but to send him to prison.

Edinburgh Sheriff Court heard yesterday that Tweed had accessed the images “all for his own use” and that no-one else was involved.

Sheriff Ross said: “It has been repeatedly said in these courts and elsewhere that merely taking part in this process – by looking at images and downloading them – is to 
participate in an industry which takes as its raw material the destruction of children’s lives.”

Police discovered the illegal images of children at his home in Duddingston Row, Craigmillar. Tweed admitted the offences at an earlier court hearing.

It emerged yesterday that he accessed nearly 18,000 indecent pictures between 2008 and 2013 – and almost 6000 of those were in the two most serious categories.

Sheriff Ross told Tweed: “I take into account your age and that you were previously of some assistance to the local community, a community which has quite rightly turned its back on you.”

Tweed was sentenced to 26 months in prison and placed on the sex offenders register for ten years. He was expressionless as he was led away to the cells.

Before the allegations came to light, he had been widely respected for his long-standing support of many local activities and projects.

As well as holding the post of secretary at Craigmillar Community Council, he was a senior member at PARC Craigmillar, the body spearheading a huge regeneration drive in the area.

It is understood Tweed was appointed as a company officer at PARC Craigmillar in January 2010, but he resigned from his role on September 29.

He was also a member of the Save The Brae campaign which successfully rescued Castlebrae Community High from closure.

His conviction has shocked the close-knit community.

Ward councillor Mike Bridgeman said he was “sickened” by Tweed’s crimes.

“I’m horrified to have learned what’s been going on with Tweed, as is the whole community,” he said. “It’s unbelievable, it’s just totally horrific and repulsive. He was trusted within the community. He didn’t work closely with children but he was on boards, he was a prominent community councillor.”

Susan Heron, a Craigmillar community activist, said: “My personal opinion is that [the sentence] is fairly lenient. As a community, I think a lot of people are in shock that this even happened, because of the type of person that he portrayed himself to be.

“I think it’s woken us up to the fact that, sad as it is, people aren’t who they say they are. That’s the real sadness for our community. When he comes out, he’ll have nowhere to go. His life will be ruined, and rightly so.”

Child abuse images secret of school campaigner

A CAMPAIGNER at the heart of a protest to save an under-threat school has been convicted of possessing child abuse images.

Terry Tweed, 65, pleaded guilty to charges of obtaining indecent images of children over five years.

Tweed, a former Craigmillar community councillor who has been a high-profile local activist for years, will be sentenced at Edinburgh Sheriff Court next month.

He was a vocal opponent of plans to shut down Castlebrae High School, which had been slated for closure amid dwindling rolls and was often quoted in the media.

Police discovered the illegal images of children at his home in Duddingston Row, Craigmillar, and he admitted to offences spanning a period between December 2008 and December last year.

Today, former colleagues and community leaders branded Tweed’s actions “unspeakable” and “unbelievable”.

Paul Nolan, a long-standing community councillor in the area, told of his “disgust”.

“He was a very active guy in the community,” said Mr Nolan. “He was on everything and then all of a sudden he just vanished.

“The community is shocked and disgusted at these crimes of depravity, which are unspeakable and unbelievable.

“I think questions have to be asked about where these offences were committed and whether any of the machines belonging to a community group were involved in this.”

Tweed had been widely respected for supporting many local activities and projects over a number of years.

As well as holding the post of secretary at Craigmillar Community Council, he was a senior member at PARC Craigmillar – the body spearheading a huge regeneration drive – and a supporter of the Save the Brae campaign which successfully rescued Castlebrae Community High from closure.

Michael Bridgman, councillor for Craigmillar, said: “I’m completely stunned by this revelation. You just don’t know what people do behind their own closed doors.”

PARC bosses confirmed Tweed resigned from the organisation at the end of last month, and Mr Nolan warned the conviction would come as a further “body blow” to residents after criminal charges were recently brought against two members of staff at Castlebrae High for unrelated matters.

Mr Nolan said: “[Tweed] was one of the leading campaigners during the Save the Brae campaign and he was a community councillor.

“How on earth is the city council going to take us seriously in future if one of the leading representatives turns out to be such a character? There needs to be an inquiry into how people like Tweed can rise to such prominence.”

It is understood Tweed was appointed as a company officer at PARC Craigmillar in January 2010. Director Eric Adair said: “[Terrence Tweed] is no longer a director at PARC Craigmillar. He resigned on September 29.”

Tweed declined to comment.

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