A pensioner was jailed for five years today after subjecting children to sexual abuse more than three decades ago.

Former chef Malcolm Browning, 73, preyed on a girl, who he tried to rape, and a boy whom he exposed to pornography.

A judge told Browning at the High Court in Edinburgh: "You robbed them of their childhoods."

Lord Mulholland told the sex offender that in sentencing he took into account his age and the medical conditions he suffers.

But the judge added: "You stand convicted of the sexual abuse of two children."

He added: "No child should have to put up with his kind of behaviour."

He said that reading a victim impact statement provided by the woman survivor of Browning's abuse was "harrowing".

Browning, formerly of The Coach House, Port Appin, in Argyll,  had earlier denied a string of sex offences, but was found guilty of three charges of indecent behaviour towards the children and of the attempted rape of the girl.

All the crimes were committed in the village of Maidens between 1979 and 1984.

During the abuse of the girl, which began when she was aged 11, Browning got her to perform sex acts on him  and took naked photos of her. He also used a sex toy on the child.

He also tried to rape the girl on a single occasion.

The boy was targeted by Browning from the age of seven and was subjected to indecent remarks and efforts by the predator to  attempt to allow him to take indecent photos of the youngster.  

The court heard that Browning still maintained that he was innocent of the offences.

Defence solicitor advocate Simon Collins said: "He accepts these are serious offences. He denies the commission of the offences."

He said that on a number of occasions while working as a chef Browning had been responsible for mentoring young people.

Mr Collins said: "His health is not good." He said that Browning, who appeared in the dock with the aid of a walking stick, has diabetes and heart issues.

Browning was placed on the sex offenders' register.