A former Celtic youth coach deemed unfit for trial groped a teenage player in their stadium’s changing room, a hearing was told.
Frank Cairney, 87, allegedly inappropriately touched the upset 15-year-old while giving him a “consoling” hug in 1986.
Cairney was said to have also touched the boy’s lower back and moved his hand to his upper thigh.
Cairney was said to have committed sexual crimes against a total of three teenage boys between July 1978 and June 1989.
This includes at Celtic Park and in the club’s Barrowfield training ground.
Cairney, of Uddingston, South Lanarkshire, was due to go on trial for five days at Glasgow Sheriff Court.
But, his advocate Andrew Crosbie told Sheriff Tom Hughes at a hearing: “He maintains his plea of not guilty.
“There is a joint position by me and my friend.
“You are aware that Mr Cairney is unfortunately unfit to stand trial.
“You have had sight of expert reports and that it is the unequivocal opinion of a doctor from September and two other doctors.
“My friend and I agree that it’s impossible for him to stand trial on this matter.”
Prosecutor Mark Allan joined in the motion adding: “It is established on the balance of probabilities that Mr Cairney is incapable of participating in the trial.
“There is no issue from the Crown for the absence of Mr Cairney and you are invited to fix an examination of facts.”
Sheriff Hughes granted the joint motion to fix an examination of facts and allowed for Cairney’s absence.
Previous hearings had been told that Cairney had been suffering from “health difficulties” including dementia.
Court papers state Cairney assaulted the boy when he was aged between 15 and 18 within the Barrowfield dressing rooms as well as Celtic Park between February 1, 1986 and December 31, 1988.
It is claimed Cairney repeatedly hugged him, repeatedly placed his hands underneath his clothing and repeatedly touched his back, stomach, thigh, groin, buttocks and penis.
The now 52-year-old man stated in his evidence he signed for Celtic in early 1986.
The witness stated that he moved to Glasgow alone and worked an apprentice at the club who cleaned the dressing rooms and boots of senior players.
He stated that his first interaction with manager Cairney came at an under-16 tournament in France.
The man stated that Cairney was a “big imposing man” and “a bit of a bully.”
He added: “He made verbals and was aggressive that’s the best way to describe it.”
The man stated that he went to home Ireland for a week after the tournament before returning to Scotland while “homesick.”
His Celtic team were said to be playing in an important match which took place at Parkhead.
The man said he played in the match – which Celtic won – as a substitute but he remained upset after full time.
The man stated that he went into the separate shower area of the Celtic Park dressing room alone and was joined by Cairney.
The witness said: “He asked how I was – I was crying and to be honest I was upset.
“He put his arms around me to hug me in a consoling way I thought at the time.
“He put his hand on my lower back and his other hand was at the top of the inside of my leg.
“He then moved his hand and touch my private parts and lower stomach.”
The man stated that he was still wearing his football kit at the time.
He said: “I was still crying, I don’t recall him saying anything.”
He added that the pair left the shower area after the incident and went back to the changing room.
Mr Allan said: “When you think back what did you think in the moment?”
The man replied: “Shock, I think I was so sad about having to come back – I don’t think I comprehended what happened.”
The hearing was earlier told that the man contacted police in 2018 about the circumstances involving him.
Mr Allan said: “These were circumstances during that time period when you were with Celtic Boys Club?”
The man replied: “Celtic Football Club.”
The charges say another boy, when aged between 15 and 16, was assaulted within a car in Paisley, Renfrewshire and in the dressing rooms at Celtic’s Barrowfield training ground between July 1, 1978 and June 30, 1979.
It goes on to state that the boy was repeatedly touched on the thigh by Cairney.
Cairney is further charged with repeatedly punching and slapping the same boy to his head and body at Barrowfield.
Cairney is also charged with indecently assaulting a third teenage boy at a hotel room in Aviemore and in a car in Cumbernauld, North Lanarkshire on various occasions between August 1, 1988 and June 30, 1989.
The examination of facts continues before Sheriff Hughes.