Scotland’s finance secretary Derek Mackay has quit reports emerged that he messaged a 16-year-old boy on social media.
According to a local newspaper, Scotish Sun, detailed allegations that the 42-year-old politician contacted the boy “out of the blue” in August of last year and sent about 270 messages on Instagram and through Facebook.
It has published a list of messages – the most recent of which is from earlier this week – involving Mr. Mackay and the boy, in which it says the Mackay invited him to dinner and to attend a rugby event.
The newspaper also reported that Mr. Mackay contacted the boy several times on Christmas Day, and told him on another occasion that he was “looking good with that new haircut”.
In one of the exchanges, Mr. Mackay is said to have told the teenager he was “cute”. In another, the boy confirmed he was 16 and tells Mr. Mackay “not to try anything”.
In a statement released on Thursday morning, Mr. Mackay said he had “behaved foolishly” and took full responsibility for his actions.
He also apologized “unreservedly” to the boy and his family.
Mr. Mackay came out as gay when he left his wife in 2013.