A former male nurse who pretended to be a teenage lesbian and preyed on 49 girls on social networking sites has had his minimum jail term reduced.

Barry McCluskey was given a lifelong restriction order and told to serve at least six years and eight months for offences carried out between 2007 and 2010.

The 41-year-old, from King’s Park, Glasgow, subsequently appealed the minimum term.

McCluskey, who worked as a staff nurse at an un-named Glasgow hospital, trawled the Bebo social network site before contacting his victims via the MSN instant messaging service.

He pleaded guilty to 49 offences during a previous hearing at the High Court in Glasgow in February 2010.

The court was told he posed as a girl called Clare or Missy and used a profile picture of a young female. He also claimed to be gay or bisexual.

The court heard how one of his victims begged McCluskey to stop, claiming she hated what was being asked.

Another youngster was sick with fear, felt suicidal and her hair began to fall out.

McCluskey was given a lifelong restriction order at the High Court in November 2011.

Temporary judge Rita Rae QC ordered that he should serve 40 months imprisonment as part of the lifelong restriction order.

She also ordered that he should serve a consecutive three years and four months on other charges.

According to the BBC, judges at the Court of Criminal Appeal in Edinburgh have now ruled that the separate consecutive sentences should be quashed and recalculated, meaning McCluskey should serve at least four years and eight months before he is eligible to seek parole.