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Houseparent denies sex abuse claims

Evening Times, 16/03/2004

A FORMER Quarriers homes houseparent has denied carrying out a catalogue of sexual abuse against eight young girls in his care.

Alexander Wilson, 61, of Carsmeadow, Quarriers Village, Bridge of Weir, is alleged to have molested and raped the girls over a 19-year period, beginning in 1965.

A jury at the High Court in Glasgow has heard allegations the children were abused, sometimes when they asked him to check their reading and writing.

Many of them wept as they gave their evidence before Temporary Judge David Burns, QC.

One of them claimed Wilson sexually assaulted her after she was car sick on a journey from the home in Bridge of Weir, Renfrewshire, to Girvan, Ayrshire.

Wilson told Donald MacLeod, defending, how he went to work as a plumber at the home in 1966 before he and his late wife Jan became house parents the following year.

He denied the allegations against him.

John Martin, prosecuting, said that none of the women had been in touch with each other since leaving the home many years ago.

He asked Wilson: "Why should they come to court and put themselves through the distress in giving evidence?"

Wilson replied: "I don't know."

Earlier the court heard some of the women say they did not tell the authorities about the alleged abuse until Wilson's wife, Jan, whom they all admired, died in 1995, aged 53.

Three of the 19 charges were dropped at the end of the Crown case yesterday before Wilson began giving evidence.

The trial continues.

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