Former Ukip chairman admits string of vulgar phone calls
Arthur Misty Thackeray made sexual comments to several women he phoned.
The former chairman of Ukip in Scotland has pleaded guilty to making a string of vulgar phone calls to women.
Arthur Misty Thackeray, 55, admitted carrying out ten sexual offences charges between October 2007 and December 2015 involving ten different women.
All of the calls took place at his home in the east end of Glasgow, at Colme Street in Edinburgh and "elsewhere".
Ukip Scotland leader and MEP David Coburn's office is at the same address in Edinburgh.
Phone records revealed Thackeray made a call to a taxi company arranging a lift from his former office to Haymarket train station on the same night some of the calls were made.
On Monday, Thackeray pleaded guilty at Glasgow Sheriff Court to nine charges of intentionally sending, or directing "sexual verbal communication" between December 1, 2010, and December 19, 2015.
One charge pre-dates the Sexual Offences Act of 2009 and was a breach of the peace charge between October 2007 and February 2008.
The court heard none of the women knew Thackeray or how he got their numbers but it is believed he took some from posters advertising slimming classes and one from a sales advert in a shop window.
The women's ages range from 25 to 66 at the time of the offences.
Thackeray told one woman he was watching adult material and thinking of her and was carrying out a sex act.
Procurator fiscal depute Mark Allan said a 25-year-old female received a text from Thackeray talking about meeting at a swinger's club.
She called him and he apologised and said he had the wrong number, then sent a message saying "You sounded really nice on the phone, do you know what I would like to do to you?"
Her partner then pretended to Thackeray the woman was a 14-year-old girl to make the calls stop.
The woman, who was a new mother, later told police she was "terrified".
He phoned four of the women on December 18, 2015, including a 33-year-old to whom he asked "inappropriate sexual questions".
In some of his calls women could hear sexual activity in the background, making them think he was watching pornographic material while talking to them.
The matter was first reported to the police in September 2013.
Mr Allan said: "Whilst the police investigated there was insufficient evidence at that time.
"This was until December 2015 when another woman contacted the police and reported the calls being made to her."
Although the calls were made from a withheld number, the woman's phone service provider was able to help trace the number registered to Thackeray. His home was searched and phones recovered and analysed.
It was found Thackeray had made a call to Central Taxis in Edinburgh on December 18, 2015.
Mr Allan added: "Between 10pm and 11pm there was a call, the accused's voice identified, made to the taxi company using his nickname Misty.
"He arranged for a taxi to take him from the office where he worked in Edinburgh where he was the chief of staff for an MEP, to take him to Haymarket Station."
The woman described being "disgusted" and one said she also felt "violated and alarmed".
Sheriff Martin Jones QC deferred sentence until next month and continued bail.
Mr Thackeray resigned as Ukip's Scottish chairman but continued as a parliamentary assistant to Coburn after being charged with the offences.
When asked by STV News to comment on his assistant's guilty plea, Coburn declined.