A SHETTLESTON councillor is urging the local MSP to apologise for remarks he made comparing child sex abuse and avoiding tax.

The SNP's John Mason said there were “some parallels” between abuse by former coaches at Celtic Boys Club and a past tax scheme at Rangers Football Club, as both hurt children.

The remark was made in an email to a constituent who wanted a public inquiry into historic abuse at the Boys Club.

Councillor Thomas Kerr claims he has been “inundated with emails” from constituents complaining about the comment made by Mr Mason.

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Mr Kerr said: “John Mason's comments were both unacceptable and offensive. I've written to him asking for him to withdraw his comments and apologise.”

Mr Mason said he had not yet received the councillor’s letter. He said the main issue was sectarianism and that he “condemned criminal and moral wrongdoing”.

He said: “In the last few days I have been inundated with Rangers fans wanting me to condemn child abuse in the strongest possible terms.

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“I absolutely do condemn child abuse in all its horrific forms. However, they particularly wanted me to condemn child abuse with any apparent link to Celtic, while carefully ignoring any child abuse linked to the Church of Scotland or anyone else.

“I am prepared to condemn both criminal and moral wrongdoing in society, whether that be child abuse, tax evasion/avoidance, violence, terrorism or anything else. However, I refuse to be drawn into a tit-for-tat battle as to which side is to be condemned the more.

“We have to work through this problem of Sectarianism in our society and I commit myself to helping with that.

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“We need negotiation and a willingness to find the middle ground. Shouting from the extremes is not the answer.”