Fort William nursery abuse allegations probed

Picture: Police Scotland
Picture: Police Scotland
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POLICE are interviewing parents of children at a Highland nursery after a man was charged with sexual abuse.

Mark MacLennan, 28, appeared at Fort William Sheriff Court following a major investigation into allegations that youngsters at the nursery had been abused.

He made no plea and was released on bail to an address in Stirling.

Staff at the Lochaber-based nursery, which can not be named for legal reasons, are described as being “shocked and stunned” by the allegations.

A Police Scotland spokeswoman said the police probe was still ongoing and officers were still trying to establish if there are any other alleged victims.

Parents were told about the investigation in a letter from nursery management.

It warned that officers would be in touch with them regarding a complaint of assault at the nursery.

It is understood the inquiry was sparked by concerns about one child, which led to another alleged victim being identified.

Officers have already visited the homes of several children to interview their parents.

The Crown Office confirmed that MacLennan had been charged under the Sexual Offences (Scotland) Act 2009, Section 20 – which covers sexual assaults on children under the age of 13.

The case has been continued.

Sheriff Raymond McMenamin agreed to MacLennan being granted bail at the request of his solicitor. His bail address was given as being in the Stirling area.

Police have confirmed that they are carrying out inquiries in relation to a report of assaults on young children in the Lochaber area and that a 28-year-old man had been charged.