A teenage boy accused of abducting a six-year-old girl before raping and murdering her on the Isle of Bute is blaming a woman for the crime.

Alesha MacPhail’s body was discovered in woodland on the Island in the Firth of Clyde on July 2 last year.

A 16-year-old boy, who cannot be named for legal reasons, denies taking Alesha her from her bed, assaulting and murdering her.

The High Court in Glasgow heard how Alesha’s naked body was found in the grounds of the former Kyles Hydropathic Hotel at Port Bannatyne.

‘Pressure to the neck and face’ was determined to be the cause of death, whilst discarded shorts, pants and a vest were discovered nearby, the court was told.

The accused has claimed a named woman committed the crime.

He also denies attempting to defeat the ends of justice by disposing of clothes and a knife.

Alesha’s grandmother, Angela King, had reported her missing at 6.23am on July 2 last year, when a 999 call was made, and she was found at about 9am.



The jury heard how a hand print belonging to the accused was found on a chair rail leading upstairs at a house in Rothesay, above steps ten and 14, on July 11.

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Judge Lord Matthews told the panel that the case, expected to last up to two weeks, was likely to cause ‘strong emotions’.

He said: ‘You have to approach this case with a great deal of professional detachment.’

Advocate depute Iain McSporran QC read out a joint minute to the court listing the agreed facts, before the judge adjourned the case until tomorrow, when evidence will be heard.