Belfast Telegraph

Murder by sex offender under review

An independent investigation is under way into how a sex offender from Ireland was free to rape and murder a mother-of-three in Scotland.

The Association of Chief Police Officers in Scotland (Acpos) has ordered a review into the level of scrutiny of Patrick Rae, 41, the day before he strangled Mary McLaren and dumped her body in undergrowth after meeting the 34-year-old at a Dundee nightclub in 2010.

He was jailed for life at the High Court in Edinburgh on Friday and ordered to serve at least 20 years for the killing. He was also placed on the sex offenders' register indefinitely.

Judge Lord Tyre said, when deciding on the sentence, he took account of the fact that Rae has previous convictions in Ireland for offences including rape.

During the investigation of the murder, concerns were raised about Rae's movements before the killing. Rae is also understood to have lived in Scotland under an alias.

The independent review is being carried out by Assistant Chief Constable Iain Livingstone of Lothian and Borders Police, who is lead officer on public protection for Acpos.

A spokesman said: "Following this tragic case an independent review was commissioned and this process is continuing."

The spokesman said Tayside Police's investigation of the case is not being criticised and that Mr Livingston`s involvement should not be construed as one force investigating another.

He added that such reviews were rare but do happen from time to time if concerns of this kind are raised during an investigation.

A Scottish Government spokesman said: "This was an extremely disturbing case, and our thoughts are with the family at this difficult time. Such crimes are rare but given the circumstances surrounding it, a significant case review is now under way, led by the Association of Chief Police Officers in Scotland."

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