August 2018

Cricket umpire spared jail after being caught with over 150 indecent images of children

A cricket umpire has been spared jail after being caught with a haul of indecent pictures and videos of children.

Frank Johnstone, 50, was snared with 137 still images and 19 videos when his father’s property was searched in July 2017.

But he was caught with further 104 sick pictures when a neighbour at his own flat found a discarded hard drive in the communal bin.

During a routine search of his laptop, having been granted bail not to use any device unless it has the capacity to retain internet usage, officers spotted a browser that didn’t do that.

Johnstone, who appeared from custody, pleaded guilty at Glasgow Sheriff Court to downloading and possessing indecent images of children between February 2003 and February 2018 at flats in Jordanhill and Knightswood.

He admitted a third charge of breaching his bail condition by using a laptop with a web browser that was set so that it didn’t retain and display the internet search history.

Sheriff Daniel Scullion handed Johnstone a three year community payback order with the condition he is supervised and participates in a programme for sex offenders.

He also made it a condition Johnstone has to carry out 240 hours of unpaid work and he will be on the sex offenders register for three years.

The court heard the police searched Johnstone’s father’s house in July 2017, acting on credible and reliable evidence.

A forensic examination revealed 27 category A pictures – the most extreme – 28 category B and 82 category C images.

There were 14 category A videos, three category B and two category C.

Procurator fiscal depute Jonathan Kemp said Johnstone appeared in court on July 24, 2017 and was granted bail with certain conditions.

In January 2018 at his home address in Glasgow, Johnstone threw out a hard drive which was spotted by a neighbour.

The neighbour took it and noticed the nature of the images stored on it, and contacted the police.

Anylysis of that found a further 48 category A images, nine category B and 47 category C pictures.

Johnstone appeared in court again, and was again granted bail.

Mr Kemp said that during a routine check by police in February 2018, a browser was found on his laptop that had been set not to remember the search history on the internet.