Alleged victim of Glasgow child abuse ring ‘just crying’ after rape, court told

An alleged victim of a child sex and witchcraft abuse ring told police he was “just crying” after being raped, a court heard.

The child made the statement during an interview with Detective Constable Brian Hamilton in December 2021.

Eleven people are on trial at the High Court in Glasgow accused of raping and sexually abusing children and involving them in witchcraft.

The seven men and four women on trial – Iain Owens, 45; Elaine Lannery, 39; Lesley Williams, 41; Paul Brannan, 41; Marianne Gallagher, 38; Scott Forbes, 50; Barry Watson, 47; Mark Carr, 49; Richard Gachagan, 45; Leona Laing, 50; and John Clark, 46 – face 32 charges between them, all of which they deny.

Owens, Lannery, Williams, Brannan and Clark are accused of attempting to murder a girl.

The court heard on Thursday that a child told Det Con Hamilton that he was raped and afterwards was “just crying”.

He also told the officer of alleged sex acts by group members, saying Owens and Brannan performed sex acts on him and two other children.

He told Det Con Hamilton he was made to perform sex acts on another two children in the presence of Owens and Lannery, who he said would “laugh” while it took place.

But the police officer told the court there were changes to the child’s story as the boy had previously said allegations he had made were false.

Det Con Hamilton asked the child why his story had changed.

The child responded: “Because I was younger (when the alleged incidents happened) I didn’t want Iain (Owens) and Elaine (Lannery) to go to prison.

“But now I realise what they did and what they made me do was wrong.”

The child also told Det Con Hamilton he felt “embarrassed” about the incidents that had taken place, which he said happened “quite a lot”.

Det Con Hamilton reassured him throughout the interview and told him he was not responsible for the adults’ behaviour.

It is alleged the offences happened between 2010 and 2020 at various locations in Glasgow, with the first offence involving a child alleged to have happened in 2012.

There are allegations involving four children.

Lannery and Owens are accused of perverting the course of justice between 2018 and 2020.

The court heard Police Scotland’s child abuse investigation unit launched a probe in March 2020.

The trial, which is expected to last six weeks, continues before Lord Beckett.

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