Hearts bosses previously warned about shamed Craig Thomson

According to Scotland’s Daily Record, HEARTS bosses were warned about child sex pervert Craig Thomson’s behaviour six months before he was arrested.

The Gorgie club received a complaint from a parent raising concerns about the player’s online activities.

But although officials warned the 20-year-old about his behaviour, they let him continue to teach PE in local primary and secondary schools.

And he was left unchecked to continue preying on young girls on the internet.

Even after charges were brought against Thomson, he continued to represent Hearts at events involving children.

The player was photographed signing club shirts for youngsters to publicise kids’ charity Barnardo’s.

Last Friday, Thomson was fined £4000 after he admitted indecent behaviour towards two girls aged 12 and 14.

The Record also revealed that Thomson did not tell Hearts chief executive David Southern or manager Jim Jefferies, who were both out of the country, that he was due in court. Thomson also tried to dodge publicity by waiting until the last minute to appear in the dock, then sitting at the back of the court in the hope that no one would recognise him.

A source close to the family of one of Thomson’s young victims said the player had volunteered to work at local primary and secondary schools.

She said: “Craig was good friends with one of the girls he preyed on. He helped teach her PE at her high school.

“He was very keen to be involved with the kids’ football.

“The pupils treated him like a hero. He would ask the first-year girls if they had PE and he got to know their timetables.”

She added: “I know at least one parent who went to Craig’s door to confront him about pestering his daughter.

“But he just denied it. I’m really glad he’s been caught and the club must sack him. He’s an arrogant young man who thought he could get away with it.”

In May, a mum of two young Hearts fans let her kids get their shirts signed by Thomson and teammate Ryan McGowan and have their photograph taken with them at an autograph session in a Barnardo’s shop.

She didn’t know Thomson was facing trial over sex offences.

Her husband said: “When I explained the situation to my wife, she was furious. What on earth were Hearts thinking about letting him continue to represent the club at events involving kids?” Barnardo’s said Hearts had not told them about the court case.

Thomson, of Bonnyrigg, Midlothian, was charged with lewd and libidinous behaviour in September 2010.

Prosecutors at Edinburgh Sheriff Court told last week how the talented right-back sent the girls pictures of male private parts, asked one of them for sex and made lewd comments about their bodies.

Both Hearts and the SFA refused to comment.