An Aberdeen man has been spared jail after being caught by an online paedophile hunter.
Alan Merchant was caught out by a man pretending to an underage girl on the internet.
The 44-year-old sent sexually explicit messages to the number, and asked the fictitious girl to send him indecent images and sent his own pictures too.
Merchant, of Wallace House, Hazlehead, previously admitted carrying out the offences over a 48-hour period last December.
He appeared for sentencing at Aberdeen Sheriff Court yesterday, and was put on a three-year supervision order. He must carry out 180 hours of unpaid work and complete a course for sex offenders.
His solicitor Mike Monro told the court: “There was no evidence to suggest the accused was contacting young girls before being contacted.
“He accepted the proverbial bait.”
Merchant will be on the sex offenders register for three years and has been banned from unsupervised contact with anyone younger than 16.