HMA v David Bowman

At the High Court in Edinburgh today, Monday 9 March 2020, Lord Boyd sentenced David Bowman to 7 years imprisonment after the accused was found guilty of the historical sexual abuse of young boys

On sentencing Lord Boyd made the following statement in court

"You have been convicted by the jury of four charges involving the sexual abuse of young boys during the 1970’s. You may have thought that it was all behind you and that the longer you remained free the less likely it was that you would ever face a court of law. But justice has a way of catching up with you.

It is clear from the social work report that you maintain the position that you adopted at trial, namely that you are innocent of all these charges. Consequently you show no remorse and no insight into the psychological harm that has blighted these men as a result of what you did all these years ago.

I have had the benefit of reading the victim statements from two of your victims but more importantly I had the opportunity of seeing them give evidence. The extent of the damage to them was clear from their demeanour and the accounts of their lives.

One of your victims says in his statement, “What I went through as a young boy ruined my childhood and still follows me to this day.” I hope in time that you may read these statements and reflect on what you did as young man in the 1970’s.

These are very serious offences – two involve the anal rape of young boys. Charge 5 narrates the rape on a single occasion of a boy who was only 5 or 6 at the time and involves a gross breach of trust.

I have listened carefully to what your counsel has said on your behalf. I accept that you have otherwise led an unremarkable and blameless life; at the age 70 you come before me as first offender. Taking all these matters into account I shall sentence you to a cumulative sentence of 7 years imprisonment backdated to 10 February 2020."