A 55-YEAR-OLD man who invited a 13-year-old girl to his Selkirk home for sex has been given a night time curfew at the town’s sheriff court.

Murray Ballantyne was made the subject of a Restriction of Liberty Order keeping him in his Elm Row property between the hours of 8pm and 7am for the next four months.

His name was also placed on the Sex Offenders Register for five years.

Ballantyne spent Christmas and New Year behind bars to allow a background report on him to be prepared, after failing to attend an appointment with a social worker after previously admitting a charge of communicating indecently with a child.

But he was released from custody earlier this month when no report was available.

He had been due to be sentenced last Monday (January 22) but failed to appear at Selkirk Sheriff Court and was arrested on a warrant and appeared from custody on Thursday, January 25.

Sheriff Kevin McCarron warned him about the consequences if he breached the night time curfew.

A previous court hearing was told Ballantyne spoke about his private parts and asked the youngster things about her underwear during a series of telephone exchanges between February and May, 2022.

He was only caught after the teenager’s sister saw messages between the two on her phone and alerted police.

Ballantyne had given the girl his number “in case she ever wanted anything” after meeting her in town, and went on to buy e-cigarettes for her on various occasions, despite knowing she was underage.

He also admitted stealing alcohol from the Aldi store in Hawick, as well as failing to appear at an earlier court hearing.