Relative of Queen Elizabeth jailed for sexual assault at Scottish castle

Simon Bowes-Lyon (34) had pleaded guilty to assaulting woman at ancestral home

Simon Bowes-Lyon, the earl of Strathmore, arrives at Dundee Sheriff Court on Tuesday. Photograph: Jane Barlow/PA Wire

Simon Bowes-Lyon, the earl of Strathmore, arrives at Dundee Sheriff Court on Tuesday. Photograph: Jane Barlow/PA Wire

 

A relative of Queen Elizabeth has been jailed for 10 months for sexually assaulting a woman at his ancestral home.

Simon Bowes-Lyon (34), the earl of Strathmore, had pleaded guilty to attacking a woman at Glamis Castle, Angus, Scotland, in February last year.

Bowes-Lyon, who is the son of a cousin of the queen, was sentenced at Dundee Sheriff Court on Tuesday.

The court previously heard the assault happened in a bedroom at the castle.

The court heard the woman was attending a three-day public relations event at the castle and had gone to bed when a “drunk” Bowes-Lyon went to her room at about 1.20am, persuaded her to open the door and pushed his way in before pushing her on the bed and sexually assaulting her.

Sheriff Alastair Carmichael told Bowes-Lyon: “Throughout all of this she made it clear that she wanted you to stop. She told you repeatedly that she had a boyfriend, repeatedly told you to leave and repeatedly had to keep pushing you away from her. All of which you ignored. Once she’d finally managed to eject you from her bedroom, you returned to the door and pleaded with her to let you back in.”

The sheriff said the attack and Bowes-Lyon refusing to leave lasted 20 minutes. The victim locked the bedroom door and wedged a chair under the handle to prevent him getting back in.

In a statement outside court after pleading guilty last month, Bowes-Lyon apologised and said he is “greatly ashamed of my actions which have caused such distress to a guest in my home”.

He said he had “drunk to excess” on the night of the attack, which he said was “no excuse” for his actions.

He added: “I did not think I was capable of behaving the way I did but have had to face up to it and take responsibility.

“My apologies go, above all, to the woman concerned but I would also like to apologise to family, friends and colleagues for the distress I have caused them.”

Glamis Castle is the seat of the earls of Strathmore and Kinghorne, part of the late queen mother’s family. – PA