South Scotland

Sex offender Robert Falconbridge's innocent mother held over indecent images

High Court in Glasgow
Image caption Falconbridge admitted three child pornography charges at the High Court in Glasgow

A convicted sex offender saw his elderly mother held by police after thousands of indecent images of children were discovered at her home.

The woman - in her 70s - was detained in August after police raided her property in Kirkcudbrightshire.

Her son Robert Falconbridge, 44, had earlier accessed the internet at her house to collect the images.

He admitted three child pornography charges when he appeared at the High Court in Glasgow.

The court heard how he refused to confess, meaning his innocent mother was held in police custody until being freed the next day.

Trawl online

However, the pensioner handed in a laptop and PC in which more images were stored.

A total of 11,367 indecent still images and 280 video clips were found on the various devices seized at both properties.

Some were at the worst end of the scale used to grade such material.

This led to Falconbridge pleading guilty to the charges.

It emerged he was already on the sex offenders register for life having earlier been convicted of similar offences, as well as a sex attack on a young boy.

He faces a lengthy jail term when he returns to court next month.

The court heard how police probing indecent image offences searched Falconbridge's mother's home in Dalbeattie in January this year.

The pensioner and her son were there at the time.

Incriminating evidence

Prosecutor Bill McVicar told how Falconbridge "spent a considerable amount of time there" where he was able to trawl online.

Officers took away computer equipment while a similar search was carried out at Falconbridge's home in Kirkcudbright.

Indecent images were found which resulted in both the sex offender and his mother being detained in August this year.

Mr McVicar told how the pensioner denied knowledge, but confirmed her son accessed the internet at her home on the computers.

However, the advocate depute said Falconbridge made no comment to police.

The court heard how the pensioner spent the night in custody before being released.

However, she returned to the police station with more incriminating evidence when she handed in another laptop and computer that her son used.

Judge Lord Doherty remanded Falconbridge in custody and deferred sentence until 28 November at the High Court in Edinburgh.

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