AN IRVINE man caught hoarding and sharing images of child abuse as far as Yemen from his phone has avoided jail for the sick pics.

Gordon Thomson pleaded guilty to three charges of downloading, possessing and distributing the indecent pictures of children from his home in Etive Place - before also being caught using another name on Facebook.

The 55-year-old admitted taking, permitting to be taken or making indecent images or pseudo pictures of children, on various occasions from February 7 and March 30, last year. 

He also admitted possessing the images from February 7 to April 1 and distributing or showing the child abuse imagery with others online from March 27 and March 29, 2022.

Kilmarnock Sheriff Court heard police attended the accused's partner's home with a warrant on April 1, 2022, before the accused's phone was searched and images found on the device.

A total of 74 indecent images were found accessible on the phone, 51 of which were the worst level of abuse including 28 category A videos and 23 still images.

Another 15 videos and still pictures were category B and eight category C.  

The Procurator Fiscal depute added: "Various chat threads on the WhatsApp application were found in which indecent images were requested by or shared by the accused.

"One of the chat logs showed a group of 111 persons in which indecent images were exchanged between users.

"One user he was communicating with had a Yemen dialling code."

Sentencing was deferred for social work reports, with Thomson added to the sex offenders register.

However while awaiting sentence Thomson breached his sex offender notification requirements, being caught with a Facebook page using another name. 

The Procurator Fiscal depute said: “In August the accused was convicted in court and made subject to notification requirements.

“On August 7 police attended his home address conducting an unanounced risk management visit. The accused within engaged and his mobile phone was examined.

"At that point officers observed Facebook page of a 'Danbert Gosling'.  

“The accused was cautioned. He was released on an undertaking to appear in court.” 

Defence solicitor Simon Brown said: “Mr Thomson is aware of the seriousness of matters. 

"Balanced against that, he is 55 with no previous convictions, and he pleaded guilty at the first opportunity." 

Sheriff Colin Bissett said: “Mr Thomson, the offences you have pleaded guilty to are extremely serious matters which merit imposing a period of custody.

“I appreciate you are 55 and this is your first offence. As an alternate to custody you will be subject to a programme to rehabilitate you and keep you from offending in the future."

He was placed in a community payback order for three years, under strict supervision from the authorities, and will take part in the Moving Forward Making Changes programme.

He will also have to complete 160 hours of unpaid work and remain on the sex offenders register for three years.