A COUNTY man has been placed on the sex offenders’ register after admitting downloading indecent images of children.

James Mackenzie, of Athelstaneford, claimed to have looked at the pictures of abused children after “accidentally” downloading them to his computer.

Mackenzie said he had been looking at adult pornography online and inadvertently downloaded the illegal content.

The 59-year-old appeared in the dock at Edinburgh Sheriff Court to be sentenced after he had previously admitted the offence.

Solicitor Gordon Addison, defending, said his client had completed a sex offenders’ course and said the case had been a “tremendous fall from grace for this man”.

Mr Addison added that Mackenzie had never been in court before and that he “fully understands the gravity of the offence”.

Sheriff Alistair Noble acknowledged that the material had “fallen into your hands while you were looking for adult pornography” but had no choice to impose a period on the sex offenders’ register.

Mackenzie was told he must complete 230 hours of unpaid work in the community and was placed on the register for five years.

Mackenzie admitted to possessing indecent photographs of children at his home address between June 9, 2013, and November 3, 2016.