A man has appeared in court accused of sending indecent images via Snapchat, along with sexual messages, to an under-age girl in Muirkirk.

John Kidd denies two charges of sexual activity with a child under 16 and one of sending her indecent pictures and messages for sexual gratification or humiliating, distressing, or alarming the complainer.

The 38-year-old is alleged to have engaged in sexual activity with or towards to a child aged between 13 and 16 in Muirkirk between January 1 and February 28, 2018.

The Crown's indictment claims the accused, of Shortlees Crescent, Kilmarnock, touched the girl on the buttocks with his hand, and that he intentionally directed sexual comments towards her by repeatedly stating "how attractive you found her".

It's also alleged that he coerced the same child into looking at a sexual image and communicating indecently with him on various occasions between February 18, 2018 and August 30 2020 at his home and elsewhere.

Court papers also accuse him of sending her sexual written communications and indecent Snapchat messages, of asking her to send him naked pictures of herself, and of sending her a message which implied he wanted to have sex with her.

Defence solicitor Robert Logan told a brief hearing at Ayr Sheriff Court that his client was pleading not guilty to all the charges, while the procurator fiscal depute said the Crown was ready for the case to go to trial.

Sheriff Desmond Leslie continued Mr Kidd's bail, and he will return to Ayr Sheriff Court at a later date.

All accused persons reported in the Cumnock Chronicle and Ayr Advertiser are considered innocent, unless they are later found or admit to being guilty.