June 2017: Now free and living in Langlee, Galashiels. Active on Facebook

May 2008

Rapist of girl, 14, faces extra curb on freedom after jail

A rapist who called his 14-year-old victim “a slapper” is facing possible further curbs after he finishes his four-and-a-half year jail term.

Former refuse lorry driver John Tunnicliffe, 42, was brought from his cell to the Court of Criminal Appeal in Edinburgh yesterday on the orders of the Lord Advocate, Elish Angiolini QC.

As Scotland’s top prosecutor, she recently called for a better deal for victims of alleged rape. Ms Angiolini also told MSPs a change in public attitude was needed and just because a woman dressed in a certain way she was not asking to be raped.

Appeal judges were told yesterday that Tunnicliffe should have been given an extended sentence – which would enable him to be kept under supervision after his release for longer than the usual licence period.

Advocate depute David Young, for the Crown, said Tunnicliffe told social workers the girl had started it by “pursuing him in a sexually predatory way”. The social workers reported him saying: “She wore revealing clothing” and that he called her “a slapper”.

He pleaded guilty to raping the girl at his home in Galashiels in April 2000.

Lord Johnston, sitting with Lords Penrose and Mackay of Drunadoon called for reports before deciding whether to impose further conditions.

December 2007

Rapist caught by daughter jailed

A man caught raping a teenage girl by his own daughter as she brought him a cup of coffee has been jailed for four-and-a-half years.

John Tunnicliffe, 42, pulled the 14-year-old victim into his bedroom when she was visiting his Borders home.

His lawyer later claimed Tunnicliffe found it difficult to express remorse to his female social worker because he considers himself attractive to women.

Tunnicliffe had pleaded guilty to raping the girl at a previous hearing.

His daughter had made a cup of coffee and saw what was happening when she went to her father’s bedroom, the High Court in Edinburgh was told.

The refuse lorry driver had attacked his victim when she was in his home in Galashiels in April 2000.

He also admitted earlier incidents of indecency involving the teenager when she was aged between 10 and 18.

The court heard how, when the victim visited his house, the accused would find excuses to touch her and would stand so that she would have to squeeze past him.

Advocate depute Alastair Carmichael, prosecuting, said Tunnicliffe was in the act of raping the girl when his daughter walked in.

Mr Carmichael said: “The accused saw she was there and told her to leave the bedroom, which she did – shocked.”

After the offences were committed the victim moved away from Galashiels with her family. She was later contacted by police when another girl complained about Tunnicliffe.

The court heard that he had previous convictions for poaching.

Sentence had previously been deferred for background reports, which suggested Tunnicliffe had shown no remorse.

Mr MacLeod said: “It is difficult to describe remorse to a woman social worker, particularly for a man like this who regards himself as attractive to women.”

Judge Lord Bracadale told Tunnicliffe that if he had not admitted what he had done the sentence would have been five years.