HMA v Michael John Murphy

At the High Court in Edinburgh Lord Uist sentenced Michael John Murphy to seven years imprisonment after he was found guilty of the physical and sexual abuse of eight boys.

8 April 2016

On sentencing Lord Uist made the folowing statement in court:

"You have been convicted by the jury of a contemptible course of criminal conduct consisting of the physical and sexual abuse of eight boys in your care during the years when you worked at St Joseph's School, Tranent. The crimes set out in charges 11, 12 and 14 consisted of particularly abhorrent and despicable sexual abuse of two boys. In behaving as you did you betrayed the trust reposed in you as a guardian of those boys and flouted your religious calling. I do not know what caused you to treat those boys, who have clearly all been damaged to varying extents by what they suffered at your hands, in such a cruel manner. Your continued denial of these crimes shows that you have no remorse or regret. It has taken a long time for justice to catch up with you, but the day of reckoning has now arrived.

You are now 82 years old. I take into account that you have otherwise done some good over the years, but I must have regard to your previous conviction for ten earlier assaults on boys during the years when you worked at St Ninian's School, Gartmore between 1960 and 1969, which resulted in a sentence of 12 months imprisonment.

On all the charges of which you have been convicted, taken together, the sentence which I impose is 7 years imprisonment.

As a result of that sentence you now become subject to the notification requirements of the Sexual Offences Act 2003 for an indefinite period".

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