July 2017

Depraved burger bar boss seduced schoolgirl

A perverted burger bar boss has been jailed for four years after admitting having sex with a schoolgirl and conducting a stalking campaign against her.

Ajay Varma, 43, terrorised his victim and humiliated her by posting sexual images of her on the internet and sending them to her relatives, including her mother, and friends.

Varma ran Smokey Jay’s, an American-style burger joint in Uddingston, Lanarkshire, and appeared on STV Glasgow’s Riverside show where he boasted about his food and gave a demonstration of his cooking skills.

Customers used social media to praise his food and ‘banter’ unaware that he was having sex with a girl aged just 14 after giving her a job in the burger bar.

After the girl told him she didn’t want to see him any more he kept watch on her, followed her and shouted abuse and threats.

Varma, of Giffnock, East Renfrewshire, also created a fake Facebook account in the victim’s name and posted messages on it.

He appeared at Hamilton Sheriff Court where he admitted having sex with the girl at the takeaway and elsewhere on various occasions between June 2015 and May last year when she was aged 14 and 15.

He also admitted taking indecent pictures of the girl and sharing these, and causing her fear or alarm by stalking her in May and June last year.

Today he was sentenced to four years and has been placed on the sex offenders’ register indefinitely.

The court heard Varma also phoned the girl, sent her text messages and tracked her location through a mobile phone he had given her.

Sentencing Varma, Sheriff Daniel Kelly QC told him: “What has emerged in this case is that over a year you entered into some sort of a relationship with a girl who was initially aged 14 and then turned 15 when you were 41.

“It was after her grandmother spoke to you about some difficulties the girl was having that you offered her employment in your shop and then you embarked on this sexual relationship with her.

“At one point you took a video while you were engaged in sexual intercourse. You also had topless photos of her in your possession.

“you engaged in stalking this girl and provided her with a mobile phone with a tracker which you used to follow her.

“You sent a video of you and the girl to her mother and posted photos of the girl on Facebook , Snapchat and WhatsApp.

“You even said you didn’t care if you got the jail for what you were doing as long as everybody saw the girl.

“There is a clear age gap here and it seems you have used your position in a controlling manner by recording and retaining these images and you sent the video to, of all people, her mother.

Smokey Jay’s opened in 2014 and customers raved about it on the TripAdvisor review site.

One said: “I’ve been to loads of burger places in Edinburgh and Glasgow, and this one blows them out of the water. Value for money, great tasting food and the banter is just as good.”

The takeaway closed last summer.

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