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Man used dating app to lie to prospective date about engaging in sexual activity with children

Bryan Miller leaving Elgin Sheriff Court
Bryan Miller leaving Elgin Sheriff Court

A Moray man yesterday admitted using a fake dating profile to claim he was engaging in sexual activities with children.

Bryan Miller, 51, chatted to a man from Yorkshire on two sites while using the profile name “Ben Miller” on August 30 last year.

During the conversations, he began engaging in what Elgin Sheriff Court was told were “dark fantasies” in which he apparently attempted to persuade the other man to engage in sordid activities.

Miller, the court heard, sent the man messages in which he asked if he wanted to engage in sexual acts with boys.

The hypothetical acts, he wrote, would include children aged between nine and 11 and would include another adult.

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After they made provisional arrangements to meet up, Miller told the man he would show him videos and claimed they would meet an 11-year-old boy.

At this point he was blocked by the other man and the full extent of his comments reported to police.

They included Miller’s claims to have already engaged in sexual acts with underage children and to have ready access to children.

Depute Fiscal Alex Swain told Elgin Sheriff Court that officers in West Yorkshire had been able to establish that the posts had originated from Kellas in Elgin and passed the information to colleagues in Scotland.

She said: “On Monday December 17, police attended at the suspect’s address to carry out a safety and welfare check due to concerns children might reside there.

“There was no reply, but a neighbour confirmed the accused and his partner stayed there and they had no children.

“When a search warrant was later executed, Miller admitted to chatting with the man online and was asked to identify all the devices in the house that belonged to him.

“His partner had no knowledge of the conversations that been going on.”

Miller, of Kellas in Elgin, had no genuine access to children and after issuing his guilty plea described his online communication as a “dark fantasy”.

Defence solicitor Ian Maltman called for background reports, given the nature of the offence.

He reserved his plea in mitigation for Miller’s next appearance in court but did say: “He is lucky to have the support of his partner and he will hopefully receive support from a psychiatrist.”

Miller pled guilty to a charge of intentionally sending or directing a sexual communication at another without consent.

Sheriff Olga Pasportnikov called for a series of reports and deferred sentence for six weeks.

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