Glasgow & West Scotland

Scientist Robert Valentine sentenced for sex acts with girl

A 31-year-old married scientist who admitted having sexual contact with a 13-year-old girl while he was aged 18 has been given a community sentence.

Robert Valentine, from Warwick, admitted a charge of lewd and libidinous behaviour towards the girl, whom he met online around 2001.

He was caught after the girl, now in her 20s, reported the incidents.

At Glasgow Sheriff Court, Valentine was given a probation order and told to carry out 200 hours of unpaid work.

Other conditions of the order include that he is supervised for two years, is of good behaviour and has to attend counselling sessions.

Relationship 'wrong'

The court heard how qualified virologist Valentine had been a student at the time of the offences.

After meeting the girl online, Valentine travelled to Glasgow on more than one occasion and had sexual contact with the girl in hotels.

The girl, then aged 13, had said their relationship should end and that it had been "wrong".

They were briefly in contact years later before the girl reported the sexual contact.

The court heard how Velentine had a "stellar" career and had been set to secure a highly-regarded post in Canada before the allegations came to light.

After being contacted by police in 2012 he gave a "frank account" of what had happened a decade earlier.

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