May 18, 2022

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Scots serial sex offender branded ‘danger to all women’ back on streets despite jail sentence

3 min read

A sex offender branded a danger to all women is back on the street despite being jailed for 13 months for his latest crime yesterday.

Robert Basterfield was jailed for over a year at Perth Sheriff Court after he admitted sending hand drawn images of male genitals to two women from his prison cell.

But he was immediately freed after the sentence was backdated to 19 June last year because he had been held on remand for the equivalent of an 18-month sentence.

Basterfield, 49, from Perth, admitted breaking the strict terms of a Sexual Offences Prevention Order by sending “cock and balls” drawings to the women.

The court was told that the strict ten-year order was imposed in conjunction with a previous jail term on 10 April 2019 – but Basterfield ignored it less than a fortnight later.

The order, banning him from having indecent communication with any woman, was breached on 23 April 2019 and again on 20 April 2020 when he sent the drawings to a banker and a housing officer.

Basterfield was previously jailed for 54 weeks for an identical offence in 2019 – when he sketched his genitals and showed the image to two women.

Basterfield had previously shown photographs of his genitals to shop workers, but resorted to drawing them by hand because he had no camera inside Perth Prison.

The crude sketches were shown to two female prison staff who were left “distressed” by the incident because of Basterfield’s background as a stalker and sex pest.

Jailing him, Sheriff William Wood said: “It is clear you are a repeat sex offender. That gives context to any action you take.

“You made two drawings. One was of a sexual act, with the name of a female prison officer next to it. It must have been alarming for the prison officer.

“The greatest concern may not have been what happened in the prison, but what may happen upon your release. The court has to dissuade you from behaving like this in future.”

Solicitor Linda Clark, defending, said: “This is perhaps not the most serious offence he has appeared in relation to. I don’t think any of the art work is any more than you may see on an adolescent male’s jotter.”

Basterfield, from Perth, had previously been convicted for showing photographs of his genitals to staff at a Boots store as he tried to buy Viagra.

In 2019, Basterfield became the first person in the UK to be made the subject of a SOPO twice and he was also banned from sexting.

He followed a “stunning” Italian tourist, offered to show an explicit photo to a chemist selling him Viagra, and sent a picture of his genitals to a virtual stranger.

Sheriff Lindsay Foulis jailed Basterfield and told him the best way to protect women from his deviant behaviour was to put him under a second SOPO.

The order will last for a decade and includes the groundbreaking sexting condition to limit “risque” phone chats unless a female specifically requests it.

The sheriff told Basterfield: “In my view there’s been an escalation in your behaviour and an accumulation of offences which have a pattern.”

In 2007, Basterfield became the first person in Scotland to be made the subject of a SOPO – and was banned from being alone with any woman.

Sheriff Foulis noted he had been out of trouble until the death of his wife three years ago but had recently declared it was “time to get back on the horse.”

He said the comment “may be an indication of his Australian approach to things” and said Basterfield had “a sense of entitlement and inability to show empathy to his victims.”

He had previously been prosecuted twice for stalking women in Perthshire and was jailed in 2006, which led to the police seeking the first SOPO order against him.

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