July 2018

Four year prison term for child abuse images

A LERWICK man has been sent to prison for four years for downloading nearly 50,000 images of children – many with sexually sadistic content.

Fifty seven year old David William Bruce, of Voderview, earlier admitted taking photographs of children over a near 10-year period when police discovered the images on a multitude of computers, phones and memory cards at his home.

Sheriff Ian Cruickshank told Lerwick Sheriff Court on Wednesday that 1,000 of the images and 12 videos were categorised at the most serious level and showed the sadistic abuse of young children and babies.

Bruce, who lives with his 90-year-old mother, downloaded the images between August 2008 and October 2017. His collection of indecent photos included 48,900 images and 56 videos which he had organised and categorised.

Defence agent Tommy Allan said that Bruce was remorseful and ashamed and as far as the worst images were concerned, he had difficulty accepting what he had done.

Bruce had no friends or hobbies and his life consisted of drinking alone and watching TV and the internet in his bedroom. There was no suggestion that he had passed any of the images on.

The sheriff said that Bruce was nonetheless responsible for creating a market for child sexual abuse. He sentenced Bruce to 28 months in prison with an extension period of 20 months when he will be released under licence. His equipment was forfeited and he will be placed under notification requirements for an indefinite period.

June 2018

Lerwick man had thousands of indecent images

A Lerwick man who had stored tens of thousands of indecent images of children on his computers will be sentenced early next month.

David William Bruce, of the town’s Voderview, admitted a charge of taking or permitted to be taken indecent photographs of children over an almost ten year period between August 2008 and 25 October 2017.

Lerwick Sheriff Court heard on Thursday that police officers had found almost 50,000 indecent images and videos stored on six laptops, 13 mobile phones and a further seven memory cards.

Of the 48,894 images, just over 1,000 were of the most extreme category involving very young children.

Procurator Duncan Mackenzie said some of the images found were of the “very worst imaginable”.

The fiscal told the court that a further 547,373 images found on Bruce’s computers were found to be borderline.

He went on to say that 57 year old Bruce had acquired “significant expertise” in finding and downloading these images, and had done so over a lengthy period and had organised the images in archives in a “systematic fashion”.

Mackenzie added that there was no suggestion that Bruce had shared the images with anybody else.

Sheriff Ian Cruickshank deferred sentencing until 4 July to allow a criminal justice social work report to be prepared.

Bail was continued, and Bruce was put on the sex offenders’ register.