Man banned from contact with animals

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An animal sanctuary volunteer who was found with a hoarde of “extreme” animal porn images was today (Thursday) banned from contact with animals and ordered to sell any he owns.

However, Mark Findlater - who was caught with hundreds of images and videos of sex acts between people and dogs, cows, pigs and horses - avoided a jail term over the haul.

Forfar Sheriff Court heard Findlater had previous volunteered at the Mountain Animal Sanctuary in Angus - but left following an accident in which his thumb and finger were partially cut off.

A probe was launched after an email containing a link to a bestiality website was found on an address he was using at work.

It emerged that Findlater had been hoarding the collection during his time working at the equine sanctuary.

Fiscal depute Robbie Brown told the court: “Checks were being made on his email that he was using at work and one of those turned up a link to a bestiality website.

“As a consequence police became involved and that is where this matter comes from.

“A search warrant was obtained, officers attended at the accused’s house and a number of items were found and examined.

“It is fair to say that the accused was fairly co-operative with the police when he was dealt with.”

Mr Brown detailed the content of a range of items including a laptop, DVDs, USB devices and a hard drive.

The material covered over 1,000 images and 400 videos of adult males and females involving permutations of sexual acts involving horses, dogs, pigs and cows, the court was told.

Findlater, 28, of Forfar, pleaded guilty on indictment to a charge of possessing the extreme pornographic material at his home address between March 2011 and November 2013.

Defence solicitor Lynne Sturrock said Findlater would adhere to any conditions placed on him if he was released.

Sheriff Gregor Murray imposed a community payback order with three years’ supervision, ordered him to take part in a sex offenders group work programme and imposed a conduct requirement banning him from contact with animals and giving him one week to sell any he owns.

The sheriff said: “These images comprised 1003 pictures and 438 videos.

“You are not someone who comprehends the vile nature of these offences.

“These difficulties ought to have been seen during your upbringing, they can now be addressed.”