THE mother of a six-year-old girl repeatedly molested by a middle-class dental student has blasted the sheriff who let her daughter’s abuser walk free.

It was revealed yesterday that Sheriff Gerard Sinclair had let 18-year-old Christopher Daniel off because the abuse, while he was aged 15 to 17, was based on “curiosity” rather than “sexual gratification”, and because a conviction might affect his career in dentistry.

Questions were also asked by the family after the sheriff claimed the girl “appeared to have suffered no injury or long-lasting effects”.

Despite being found guilty of sexual assault, Daniel was granted an absolute discharge, allowing him to leave the court with no penalty, no conviction and without his name going on the sex offenders’ register.

Initially, the courts kept Sheriff Sinclair’s reasoning for the abuse confidential, but yesterday, after details were leaked to the Times, it was published in full.

Sinclair “considered the offence to be the result of an entirely inappropriate curiosity of an emotionally naive teenager rather than for the purpose of sexual gratification”.

He said Daniels “had appeared both noticeably immature and socially awkward, features confirmed by other evidence in the case”.

He added: “It was fortunate that the complainer appeared to have suffered no injury or long-lasting effects.”

The report claimed Daniel had suffered “considerable opprobrium” as he had been temporarily suspended from his university course and had since been diagnosed with epilepsy.

It added: “During the trial, he presented as someone who, with appropriate support and guidance, could become a valuable contributor to society.

“The sheriff considered it unlikely that he would ever appear in court again as an accused. Any recorded conviction for this offence would have serious consequences in terms of the accused’s future career.”

It went on to say that the sheriff “reached the conclusion that justice could be served in this case by taking the wholly exceptional decision not to pass sentence and to grant an absolute discharge.”

The document stated that the victim’s family were “not seeking any form of retribution,” but the girl’s mum said they were not happy with the outcome of the trial.

She said: “I am absolutely gobsmacked by this. How can he possibly know this? It also seems to be at odds with the charge which was of sexual assault.

“He also says that my daughter appears not to have suffered any ‘long-lasting effects’. Again, how can he possibly know this? No-one has asked me at any point how my daughter is.”

She added: “The sheriff says that we are not seeking retribution. We don’t want him locked up but I have always said he should be put on the sex offenders’ register.

“It’s almost suggesting that I chose this sentence.

“It should be up to the sheriff to do the right thing, which is to record it as a criminal conviction at the very least.

“This appears to be shifting the blame on us. It’s outrageous.

“As we suspected, the sheriff also confirms that his career was deemed to be more important. So if he had not done as well in his exams at school he would have been put on the sex offenders’ register?

“I think people will be appalled. We asked for the reasons but we’re never told. We’ve had nothing.”