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Peterhead fisherman jailed for seven years over sex attack on drugged victim

Marsters was sentenced at the High Court in Edinburgh.
Marsters was sentenced at the High Court in Edinburgh.

A Peterhead fisherman who carried out a “dreadful” sex attack on a woman after supplying her with a potent drug has been jailed for seven years.

Former fisherman Andrew Marsters gave his victim Etizolam before molesting her and performing sex acts on her during the assault in Peterhead in September 2019.

Following an earlier guilty plea, the 48-year-old was sentenced by a judge at the High Court in Edinburgh who told him he regarded the offences as “very serious indeed”.

Lord Boyd of Duncansby pointed out that the victim’s intoxicated state was as a result of the Etizolam that Marsters had supplied to her.

‘You show little empathy’

He said: “You demonstrate little understanding of the consequences of your actions and show little empathy to your victim.”

The judge said that the sex attacker minimised his culpability blaming the drugs that he had taken and his victim.

Lord Boyd said he had no doubt that Marsters inflicted serious psychological harm to the woman and told him: “This was a dreadful sexual assault.”

He told the former fisherman: “So long as you have problems with drug addiction you will pose a danger to the public.”

The judge pointed out that Marsters, of Peterhead, already held an extensive criminal record, including nine convictions for drug offences.

Claimed it was mistaken identity

Defence counsel David Moggach said that Marsters maintained that he thought it was his then partner who was in the bed when the attack occurred, rather than the victim of the assault.

But Lord Boyd told Marsters: “It is not great mitigation you thought you were sexually assaulting someone else.”

Marsters earlier admitted sexually assaulting the woman on September 16 and 17 in 2019 at an address in Peterhead while she intoxicated through drugs and incapable of giving or withholding consent by removing her lower clothing and carrying out oral and penetrative acts on her.

He also admitted being concerned in the supply of the Class C drug Etizolam to the woman at the same dates and possessing the drug on September 17 in 2019. He had been freed on bail at Peterhead Sheriff Court in March 2019.

Had a drug problem

Mr Moggach said that Marsters was latterly unemployed and at the time of the offence was abusing drugs. He said illicit drugs were found in the house, including Etizolam which he described as “a strong tranquiliser”.

He added: “I would submit that the trigger for the offending here is his addiction. It is something he has struggled with, but it is something he must face up to and deal with.

“His position is that he thought the person in bed with him was his then partner.”

The defence counsel said Marsters had to acknowledge that he has admitted a serious offence, although a background report prepared on him deemed him suitable for alternative disposals to custody.

However Lord Boyd jailed him for seven years and placed him on the sex offenders’ register indefinitely.

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