Man who groped and kissed women’s buttocks told to expect jail

A 24-year-old man has pleaded guilty to a string of sexual assaults showing “bizarre and sinister behaviour” by touching and kissing women on their buttocks in public, including Connochies in Lerwick and the Brae Co-Op.

Desislav Branimirov Ivanov, whose address was given as Grampian Prison, appeared at Lerwick Sheriff Court on Friday. At an earlier hearing his address was given as simply Shetland’s North Mainland.

He pleaded guilty to eight charges of intentionally or recklessly sexually touching a number of unknown females and a child between May and August this year.

This included placing his hand on someone’s buttocks at the Fort Cafe in Lerwick and again on an unknown woman’s buttocks when in a passenger vehicle on North Road, Lerwick.

The charges also included kissing a woman on the buttocks at the Brae Co-Op, placing his face against a woman’s buttocks at the same shop, as well as rubbing his hand across a woman’s rear and the same with a child in the store.


“Here is a course of conduct whereby the accused is exhibiting bizarre and sinister behaviour” DUNCAN MACKENZIE


Ivanov admitted kissing a woman on the buttocks in Connochies, Lerwick, in July and placing his hands on a woman’s buttocks in the shop on a separate occasion that month.

Sheriff Philip Mann said he wanted background reports before sentencing Ivanov.

Procurator fiscal Duncan MacKenzie said the charges on their own did not reflect the serious nature of the offending.

“Here is a course of conduct whereby the accused is exhibiting bizarre and sinister behaviour,” he said.

Mr MacKenzie said it was “a most unusual form of sexual fetishism” and it appeared that Ivanov got satisfaction from touching the unsuspecting women “but also visually recording himself as he’s doing it”.

He suggested Sheriff Mann consider a deportation notice.

Defence agent Tommy Allan said his client’s behaviour was bizarre and worth investigation through background reports.

Ivanov, he said, was not in a position to be applying for bail.

“These are, on the face of it, very serious charges and quite likely to lead to a custodial sentence,” Sheriff Mann said.

He added Ivanov had never had a custodial sentence and it was incumbent for him to request background reports.

Ivanov is to appear in court on 22nd November and has been remanded in custody.


Get Latest News in Your Inbox

Join the The Shetland Times mailing list to get one daily email update at midday on what's happening in Shetland.