Firefighter who raped girl he rescued jailed

A FIREFIGHTER who raped a nine year-old girl after she had been rescued from a blaze has been jailed for 10 years.

John McGinn. Picture: Spindrift

John McGinn pounced on the traumatised child then threatened to kill her mother if she said anything.

The 56-year-old also raped and abused a woman as well as assaulting another young girl during separate incidents.

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Lord Bonomy yesterday told McGinn he was guilty of a “catalogue of brutal behaviour” as he returned to the High Court in Glasgow to be sentenced.

McGinn had been convicted in June of six charges including rape and lewd and libidinous conduct. Lord Bonomy also placed him on the sex offenders’ list indefinitely.

McGinn - who continues to deny the crimes - showed no emotion as he was lead handcuffed to the cells. The pervert worked as a firefighter across North Lanarkshire for more than 30 years.

He joined colleagues in January 1994 to battle a blaze at the young rape victim’s house in Bellshill. McGinn knew the child and her family, having lived in the same area.

While the youngster’s mother was rushed to hospital with smoke inhalation, the shaken child was taken to her grandmother’s to be cared for.

McGinn later turned up and it was there he took advantage of the schoolgirl. He initially claimed they were playing a game called “King of the Castle” - but instead put his hand over her mouth and said it would be “okay”.

The victim, now aged 30 recalled: “I told him to stop. He said if I told anyone he would kill my mother.”

McGinn, who also worked as a bouncer, was held by police almost 20 years later after the woman plucked up the courage to report her ordeal. But he insisted the rape was not true – and that the victim was “not a very nice person”.

He told detectives: “It’s a downright lie – it did not happen. No chance. For her to come out with that is ridiculous.

“I would rather put a bullet in my own head than be a paedophile.”

He added: “Hanging is too good for a paedophile. Anything they have said is a downright lie.”

McGinn tried to blacken the victim’s name further by insisting she had once to blackmail him out of his lucrative fire brigade pension.

But a jury further heard that a woman also suffered at McGinn’s violent hands around the same time.

The 50-year-old branded the retired fireman “a monster”.

Edith Forrest, defending, yesterday said McGinn’s wife of more than 20 years remained “very supportive” of her rapist husband.

Miss Forrest added: “His position, as at the trial, is a denial of these offences.”