Glasgow & West Scotland

Fireman John McGinn raped young girl he rescued from blaze

John McGinn will be sentenced later this month Image copyright Spindrift
Image caption John McGinn will be sentenced later this month

A firefighter has been found guilty of raping a nine-year-old girl hours after he rescued her from a blaze.

John McGinn, 56, saved the girl, whom he knew, from a fire at her house in Bellshill, North Lanarkshire, in 1994.

The now-retired firefighter later raped her and threatened to kill her mother if she told anyone.

The girl, now aged 30, later contacted police. An investigation of McGinn's past led to him being convicted of six charges against the girl and others.

McGinn was back at the High Court in Glasgow for sentencing having been convicted of the charges in June.

'Downright lie'

The case, however, was adjourned until later this month.

Earlier, the court heard that McGinn denied raping the young girl after he was arrested by police.

He told detectives: "It's a downright lie - it did not happen. No chance. For her to come out with that is ridiculous. I would rather put a bullet in my own head than be a paedophile."

He added: "Hanging is too good for a paedophile."

McGinn, from Bellshill, claimed the victim had previously tried to blackmail him as she knew he had a lucrative fire brigade pension.

He claimed the rape allegation was payback for not giving her money.

The jury heard, however, that McGinn had assaulted another young girl and given her sweets and juice to keep her quiet.

The court also heard from a woman, aged 50, who had lived with McGinn in the Bellshill area, in the 1980s.

She said she had suffered years of sexual and physical violence from him and described McGinn as "monster".

The woman told the court that she was repeatedly raped by McGinn and had eventually snapped and chased him with a knife after he tied her to a bed and sexually assaulted her.

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