Crime in Moray: 'Despicable' sex offender from Elgin jailed
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A prolific predator from Moray has been jailed for eight years today for a catalogue of sex crimes against 10 victims.
A judge told Matthew Watson that his behaviour was "utterly despicable".
Lord Richardson stated the 36-year had used his victims for sexual gratification, adding his actions have had a profound and long-lasting effect on some of them.
Speaking at the High Court in Edinburgh, Lord Richardson added: "As you will surely recognise a lengthy period in custody is the only appropriate sentence I can pass on you to reflect your appalling conduct.
"You subjected each of these women to deeply distressing experiences."
Lord Richardson also ordered Watson should be kept under supervision for a further five years following his eventual release from prison.
The court heard that Watson of Mannochmore, Thomshill, had been assessed as posing a high risk of being convicted again for sexual offences in the future.
Lord Richardson said a background report prepared on the rapist revealed that he continued to deny responsibility for his most serious crimes.
Watson was earlier found guilty of five offences by a jury.
These included three charges of rape and one of assault with intent to rape.
He also admitted a further 13 offences, including indecent conduct and having sex with a minor.
The offences occurred across Moray and in Inverness between 2005, when Watson was 19, and 2018.
One victim told police that Watson had sent her a friend's request through Facebook after her 14th birthday.
His messages to the schoolgirl quickly became flirtatious, then increasingly sexual.
He asked for naked pictures.
As a result of his persistence she sent him a topless photograph.
Watson responded with pictures of his naked torso and penis.
He went on to pick up the child in his car and drive her to a wooded area for sex on two occasions.
Another 14-year-old was raped inside a car at a location in Inverness.
Watson will be placed on the sex offenders' register indefinitely.