A MAN was fined this week after he kicked a burning log in the face of a teenage boy at a campsite.

The 15-year-old sustained minor injuries to his face and leg when Robert Lafferty stomped out their campfire in September.

He roared up to a circle of tents on a trail motorcycle after hearing they had been pitched in woods on the south side of Loch Tay, Stirling Sheriff Court was on Tuesday.

He told the campers, a group of teenagers who were celebrating one of their number's 16th birthday, that they shouldn't be there, and gave them two hours to go.

The 49-year-old then set about trying to extinguish the fire which they had been sitting beside.

As he kicked and stamped on the flaming embers, a large log flew into the air and hit the 15-year-old boy in the face and and on the leg.

The impact of the lighted log caused a burn to his left calf and a one-centimetre cut to the chin. 

The court heard that, fortunately, his injuries were minor.

Ann Orr, prosecuting, said the teenagers had set up their camp in the woodland off the South Loch Tay Road, near Killin, on September 18, 2015.

She said: "They had set up tents and had a small campfire burning.

"During the course of the evening another youth arrived in the area and was using a motorcycle, and the campers asked him to leave because of the annoyance it was causing."

Mrs Orr said the motorcycling youth left, but a short time later the campers heard a motorcycle engine again, and Lafferty arrived, on the same trial bike that the youth had been riding earlier.

The depute fiscal said it emerged that the first motorcycle rider had been Lafferty's son.

Lafferty began "remonstrating" with the campers about "how they had treated his son".

Mrs Orr said: "There seems to have been an altercation, then Mr Lafferty began to kick and stamp on the lit campfire, causing a log to fly up into the air.

"It was still alight," she added. "One of the boys standing near the fire was struck by the wood coming up from the fire on the face and leg, causing minor injuries."

The depute fiscal also said Lafferty was telling the campers to "get off the land" and added: "He said he'd come back in two hours, then left the area.

"The youths packed up their tents and moved on."

Mrs Orr said there was "a suggestion" that Laffety had some involvement with the land on behalf of the owners.

The boys complained to their parents, and Lafferty was traced and charged.

Lafferty, a painter and decorator, of Lyon Cottages, Killin, Perthshire, pleaded guilty to a charge that he had culpably and recklessly, and with utter disregard for the consequences, repeatedly kicked and stamped on the campfire did cause a piece of wood, then alight, to strike the youngster on the head and body, to the danger of all the campers and in particular to the danger of the boy who was injured.

Not guilty pleas to two further charges alleging, that he assaulted two other teenage boys, both aged 16, seizing one by the clothing and pushing him, and punching the other on the head, were accepted by the prosecution.

Alistair Burleigh, defending, said Lafferty had not been aware "that the child had been injured by the log".

Mr Burleigh said Lafferty organised motorcycle trials on the land with the permission of the owners, Tillhill Forestry, and unofficially "kept an eye" on the wood for the company.

He said the youngsters had been camping without consent, and had been drinking and chopping down trees. He said some of the logs on the fire were "six foot long".

Mr Burleigh said: "He tried to tell them they couldn't camp there or set a fire there, and they told him they had permission, which was complete rubbish."

Sheriff Gillian Wade QC said Lafferty had "obviously acted in an inappropriate way" and said: "It should have been handled quite differently."

Fining him £300, she added: "There is no doubt that you acted as a responsible member of the local community and you were quite right to be concerned about the activities of these youths in the wood when they were cutting down trees and setting fires in a way which was potentially damaging and dangerous to the environment, but it's not as a result of that understandable concern that you find yourself here today. 

"Rather it is the way in which you dealt with the situation and the unfortunate consequences.

"You pled guilty to acting in a culpable and reckless manner which resulted in a youth being injured."