Former Celtic kitman jailed for abusing young boys dies in custody

A former Celtic kitman who sexually abused young boys has died in custody.

James McCafferty, 76, was jailed for six years and nine months in May 2019 after he admitted a string of historic sexual offences.

McCafferty, who was also a youth coach, pleaded guilty to 11 charges related to paedophile activity against 10 victims, which took place over several decades from the 1970s.

The Scottish Prison Service said: “James McCafferty, 76, a prisoner at HMP Glenochil, died on Saturday November 19.

“He was convicted at Edinburgh High Court in 2019. Police Scotland have been notified and the matter reported to the procurator fiscal.

“A fatal accident inquiry will be held in due course.”

The High Court in Edinburgh heard in May 2019 that McCafferty abused his position of power and used his intimidating physique to carry out a campaign of “sexual depravity” against budding footballers.

The incidents took place in several locations across Scotland – including team showers, hotel rooms and mini-buses – over decades.

Sentencing him at the time, Lord Beckett said McCafferty had used his “overpowering” nature to achieve his “depraved objectives” of abusing young boys.

McCafferty’s lawyer told the court he wanted to apologise to his victims and their families.

The sentence in Scotland came after McCafferty was jailed for three years and nine months in Northern Ireland in 2018 after admitting eight counts of sexual assault on a boy between December 2012 and December 2015 when his victim was aged between 14 and 16.