A Moray businessman has been found guilty of sexually assaulting two women following a trial at Inverness Sheriff Court.
Michael Ramsay had denied charges that he sexually assaulted one woman by penetrating her with his fingers and sex toys and another by trying to remove her clothes and kiss her.
But a jury took under an hour to return guilty verdicts on both charges, after hearing two days of evidence against the 66-year-old.
They also convicted him of two charges of communicating indecently, relating to sexual comments he made and sexual messages he sent.
Ramsay gave one woman “hot toddies” and vodka at his Ardgilzean home near Elgin in March 2018, before subjecting her to an unwanted massage and assaulting her.
At his second home in Findhorn, Moray, the predator convinced his second victim to try on a “mini kilt” belonging to his then-estranged but now-ex-wife, having convinced her it would be a good outfit for an upcoming Burns Supper.
As she did so, Ramsay tried to take down her trousers and kiss her.
Moray businessman Michael Ramsay prevented one victim from escaping
In evidence led by fiscal depute Robert Weir, the court heard both women tell the jurors that their attacker’s attention was unwanted.
The first woman said she “wanted to leave” to get away from the sex offender but “he would not let me”.
She added: “He would grab my arms and pull me. He physically restrained me. I remember being scared and not wanting to be there”.
The witness told the jury that, following the assault, she “felt gross”.
The then-partner of the second victim told the court how she was left “disturbed” and “flustered” by the incident.
Businessman told jury his victim near Elgin ‘seemed very keen’ for unwanted massage
After being arrested for the Ardgilzean assault, Ramsay told police officers: “Her fluids are on the sex toys in the house. She used them on herself”.
One officer told the court that “he made reference to a phone recording that he would have in his possession that detailed a conversation that showed that the acts between himself and the complainer were consensual”.
But the court heard further enquiries didn’t turn up any recordings that were relevant to the investigation.
When Ramsay was detained for the incident in Findhorn, he told them: “Check her mobile telephone for blackmail”.
Taking to the witness stand to give evidence in his defence, he told his solicitor advocate Bill Adam that any contact with the women had been consensual.
Asked about the offer of a “full body massage” that he made to the first woman, he replied: “She seemed very, very keen for that to happen”.
Michael Ramsay claimed Moray sex assault victims were ‘entrapping’ and ‘blackmailing’ him
Speaking about the second incident, Ramsay claimed: “I was buckling her kilt up”.
He told Mr Weir under cross-examination: “While I was kneeling down, I said, ‘Do you want to take your PJ bottoms off so you can get a better perspective on how it will look’?”
The accused explained to the court that, when he moved to pull them down, she exclaimed: “Oi, that’s my knickers!”
When asked why his accusers had made allegations if that were the case, Ramsay said he believed the first woman had been tasked with his “entrapment” by his estranged wife’s lover.
He told the jury that the second woman was attempting to “blackmail” him.
But the jurors took under an hour to reject his version of events, returning majority guilty verdicts on all four charges.
Sherriff threatens Findhorn pervert with jail sentence
Sheriff Eilidh MacDonald told Ramsay, of Findhorn: “You have been found guilty of these charges.
“Charge one, in particular, is an extremely serious charge and I’m required to give consideration to all sentencing options – including considering a custodial sentence”.
She deferred sentencing Ramsay until the new year to allow time for the production of a criminal justice social work report and an assessment of the pervert’s suitability for a rehabilitation programme.
The sheriff also placed Ramsay on the sex offenders register with immediate effect, with his eventual length of registration still to be determined at sentencing.