Page last updated at 13:18 GMT, Thursday, 11 September 2008 14:18 UK

Teacher abuse victims speak out

Colin Macdonald
Sentence on Macdonald was deferred until October

Three people from the deaf community in Scotland have waived their right to anonymity to speak of the "sickening" abuse they suffered from a teacher.

Colin Macdonald, 61, from Wakefield, West Yorkshire, was found guilty last month of 10 charges of abusing children in his care between 1973 and 1983.

Some of his victims attended the High Court in Glasgow on Thursday to hear sentence passed on Macdonald.

They spoke out after sentence was deferred pending psychiatric reports.

Joseph McIntyre, 46, George Drinnan, 45, and Jim Colhoun, 48, told how they were abused by Macdonald on camping and skiing trips during school holidays.

Mr McIntyre said Macdonald sickened him and he just wanted to see him jailed.

"When we went on skiing trips as a young boy, he fed us alcohol and we were drunk and he would touch us up while other people were sleeping," he said.

"You carry this around when you get brought home and you can't tell your parents because you're terrified."

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Abuse victims speak out

Another of Macdonald's victims, George Drinnan, said he would never forget what had happened.

"It's always in my mind, it's stuck there," he said.

"When Colin will be sent down deaf people will be happier. We're not going to let him get away with it."

Mr Colhoun spoke about how being abused by Macdonald had changed his life.

"He ruined my childhood. I just hope I can get closure when he is jailed," he said.

During Macdonald's trial, the court heard how he was a trusted instructor whose skills in mountaineering and outdoor activities placed him in demand at youth camps.

But he carried out attacks on boys in his care at various locations including Glasgow, Glendoll, Sutherland, Mallaig, Glencoe, Aviemore and the isles of Rum and Harris.

'Admitted abuse'

His youngest victim was just 10 and the oldest 15.

Macdonald, who is originally from Glasgow, was finally caught after two of his victims exchanged text messages decades later and went to the police.

He later admitted abuse while being questioned by Northern Constabulary at Wakefield, West Yorkshire, where he fled after the allegations emerged.

During his trial, eight charges were dropped but he was found guilty of 10 charges of sodomy and attempted sodomy, sexual assault and lewd and libidinous behaviour.

Macdonald, who is deaf and unable to speak, was also put on the Sex Offenders Register.

When he appeared at the High Court in Glasgow on Thursday, victims had travelled from all over Scotland and two from London to see him being sentenced.

Judge Lord Malcolm said the four-week delay, for psychaitric reports, was "unfortunate and unsatisfactory".

MacDonald will now be sentenced at the High Court in Edinburgh next month.


SEE ALSO
Former teacher convicted of abuse
05 Aug 08 |  Highlands and Islands
Former teacher on abuse charges
29 Jul 08 |  Highlands and Islands

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