A JUDGE has been asked to lift a ban on identifying the 16-year-old killer of Alesha MacPhail.

Tony Graham QC, the lawyer representing several news organisations, told Lord Matthews at the High Court in Glasgow that it would be "naive" to think the teenager's identity is not already known among members of the Bute community and at Polmont Young Offenders Institute.

He said the name of the boy, convicted on Thursday of the six-year-old's rape and murder, had been on Facebook, Twitter and available via a Google search since last July.

A "substantial majority" of Scotland's printed press and broadcast media are represented in the application, the lawyer said.

He asked the judge to allow the publication of the boy's name, address, school, and images of him.

READ MORE: Alesha MacPhail: Teen boy who raped and killed six-year-old could be named TODAY

Scots law prohibits the identification of under-18s subject to criminal proceedings.

Prosecutors said they would remain neutral.

Advocate Depute Iain McSporran QC said: "I have no submissions that his Lordship should exercise his discretion one way or the other."

Brian McConnachie QC, representing the boy, said: "The fact that things may be on social media is not a reason that the court should overrule the prohibition."

READ MORE: Alesha MacPhail: Teenager found guilty of murder of six-year-old

He added: "It's little argument to say, well, it's going to happen (his identification) when he's 18 anyway."

Mr McConnachie also said the fact that the boy had incriminated another person was no reason to identify him.

He said: "To make an order on the basis that Toni Louise McLachlan was incriminated would simply be tit for tat and nothing more than that."

Read more of today's top Glasgow stories.