July 2018

English dad-of-four travelled 500 miles to have sex with 14-year-old girl in Kirkcaldy hotel after grooming her online

A dad-of-four travelled 500 miles to have sex with a 14-year-old girl in a Kirkcaldy hotel after grooming her online.

The convicted sex offender, who contacted his victim on an online self harm support group, has now been caged for four and a half years.

Michael Murray, 34, travelled to meet the teenager, who “genuinely believed” he was trying to help her.

He initially pretended he was just 18 before going on to have sex with her at the hotel in Fife.

Murray was snared during a cop probe when it was also discovered he had asked another teenage girl to send him a naked photo.

It emerged he was previously convicted of indecent assault and exposure in England.

Jailing Murray, from Devon, judge Lady Stacey said: “You preyed on young girls.

“You deceived them and there was planning and preparation in the way you carried out these crimes.

“It is obvious you present a risk to young girls.”

Lady Stacey placed Murray on the sex offenders’ register and ordered him to be monitored in the community on licence for three years after he was released from jail.

The High Court in Glasgow heard that the 14-year-old began chatting to Murray online in July 2017.

Prosecutor Angela Gray said: “She started communicating with Murray via a Facebook self harm support group.

“He had previously set up a Facebook account in the name Andi Richardson.”

Murray pretended he was 18 and also sent a fake pic to the girl and the pair were in daily contact.

Miss Graysaid: “She disclosed her feelings and reasons for why she was seeking help.

“He listened to her and offered her support. She began to trust him genuinely believing that he was trying to help her.”

They started talking on the phone before the pervert instigated “sexual chat” and pestered her for photographs.

In October last year Murray then told the girl his name was Michael and he was 25.

Despite this, she still agreed to see Murray when he suggested they meet up.

He travelled to Kirkcaldy on November 3 and on the train journey a passenger “became alarmed about a video call he was making to the girl and alerted the British Transport Police who quizzed Murray.

He told them he was on his way to visit his daughter in Scotland and was allowed to continue his journey.”

He met his victim that afternoon and they checked into a hotel where Murray had sex with the youngster.

The girl, who cannot be named for legal reasons, went to the cops who recovered a string of sexually explicit messages between the pair.

Murray was also in touch with another 14 year-old girl online.

He asked her for a nude picture claiming he would send one in return

Murray pled guilty to having unlawful sex with the 14-year-old and sending sexual images and texts to her.

He also admitted sending a sexual image to the other teenager and invited her to send sexual images to him.

The offences were committed in Fife between July and November 2017.