A YOUNG man has been placed on the Sex Offenders Register after he pleaded guilty to having sex with a 13-year-old schoolgirl.

Nathan McMahon, 19, committed the offence within the grounds of Greenock's Ravenscraig Stadium.

McMahon — who was 18 at the time — was arrested after the girl's suspicious mother raised the alarm.

The town's sheriff court heard how police charged him after his DNA was found during a forensic examination.

Prosecutor Emma Jeffrey said: "The mother of the complainer contacted the police stating that she believed her daughter had been engaging in under-age sex.

"She had went out to look for her daughter and suspected that she'd been engaging in sex, although her daughter denied this.

"Police attended in response and spoke to the 13-year-old and she confirmed that she had consensual sex with the accused and that he was 18."

The court was told that the girl, who is now 14, had known McMahon for around nine months prior to her encounter with him on June 4 last year.

Police conducted a video-recorded interview with her on June 5.

Fiscal depute Miss Jeffrey said: "She confirmed to the police that she had been sexually active prior to the incident and that this was the first time she'd had sex with the accused.

"She said that it was consensual and she didn't want to get anybody into trouble."

McMahon, of Cumberland Road in Larkfield, made no reply when he was cautioned and charged at Greenock police office.

Defence lawyer Ellen Macdonald reserved her plea in mitigation on behalf of her client until a sentencing hearing which is due to take place later this month.

Ms Macdonald said: "It is fair to say that this is a matter that has caused him anxiety for some time."

Sheriff Derek Hamilton deferred sentence for a background report and placed McMahon on the Sex Offenders Register with immediate effect.

The length of time he will remain subject to the register will be determined at the further calling of the case on April 30.