Sex criminal blames gay “repression” after grooming kids


By Michael MacLeod

AN old-age pervert who groomed two boys by plying them with alcohol then sexually abusing them has been jailed for eight months.

Joseph Johnstone, 67, claimed that growing up in a time when homosexuality was frowned upon skewed his understanding of normal behaviour.

He snared two 15 year-old boys by inviting them into his home for tea and biscuits in May last year.

He then showed them porn and gave them booze before performing sickening sexual acts on them while they were drunk.

Johnstone was caught after one of the lad’s worried mums turned-up at his home and found her son in his bedroom.

The paedophile originally told cops that the boys were psychic and that they went to his house so he could interpret their dreams.

One of the victims has since suffered suicidal thoughts.

Today (Tuesday) at Edinburgh Sheriff Court Johnstone was told that on release from prison after eight months he will remain on licence for a further 12 months.

Sex crimes

He was also put on the sex offender’s register for 10 years after previously admitting two charges of committing an act of gross indecency with a child.

The offences were committed between May 1 and June 20 at his home in Edinburgh’s Gracemount area.

Fiscal depute Melanie Ward told the court how Johnstone pedalled his Captain’s Drive home in Edinburgh as a hang-out for youngsters.

Miss Ward said the boys met Johnstone while passing his home and the pensioner invited them in.

She said: “After a while the accused invited them in for 10 minutes at a time to offer tea, biscuits and so on.

“There is this apparent building up of a relationship between this 67-year-old man and these 15-year-old boys.

“On one occasion in May last year when both the complainers attended at the address the accused supplied them with alcohol to the extent that they became quite drunk.

“On this occasion the accused took both children upstairs into one of the bedrooms and showed them films of a pornographic nature.

“The complainer in charge two began to feel unwell and left the room and went downstairs leaving Mr Johnstone and the complainer in charge one together in the bedroom.”

Miss Ward said at this point Johnstone performed a sexual act on the drink-addled youngster before carrying out an almost identical attack on the second boy two days later.

Mother’s discovery

She added: “This all came to light as the mother of the complainer in charge two was under the impression that her son was staying overnight at a friend’s house and she then tried to contact him at the address that she thought he was staying at.

“Of course he was not and she was then informed that he was at Mr Johnstone’s address.

“She then went with another person to that address and eventually the accused let them in and she found her son lying on one of the beds there.”

The horrified mum called in police and the children were able to tell the police everything.

Miss Ward said: “The accused was then interviewed where he admitted knowing that both of the boys were 15 years of age.

“He claimed that both were psychic and that one of the complainers would come to visit and Mr Johsntone would explain what his dreams meant.

“He initially stated that nothing of a sexual nature had occurred but he did admit that he had supplied them with alcohol.”

In a bid to dodge a prison sentence, Johnstone blamed society for leaving him “repressed.”

His lawyer Paul Dunne said: “He has considered himself to be a homosexual throughout his life and says that he was born in a time and within a culture in which homosexuality was simply unacceptable.

“He has therefore repressed his sexuality throughout his life and this resulted in both sexual and social isolation.

“It is clear he needs support in understanding the boundaries of sexual expression.

“At times he does not always appreciate the norms and the bounds of acceptable behaviour between men his age and young men.”

Public protection

But Sheriff Alistair Noble said he was worried to hear that Johnstone regarded the child victims as “young men.”

He told him: “In relation to your views about the offences there are some concerns in relation to that.

“It does appear that you have some difficulty in appreciating the seriousness of the matter.

“You view the complainers as young men rather than children and you also view yourself to be led astray.

“I have to weigh up these matters and the view I reach is that in your case a custodial sentence cannot be avoided.

“And because of the gravity of the offences I must ensure that the public is adequately protected on your release also.”