THE SNP last night admitted it was warned about the violent past of disgraced MSP Bill Walker three years before he was elected to Holyrood.

Information about Walker, who was accused of domestic abuse by three former wives, was presented to the constituency office of the deputy first minister Nicola Sturgeon in February 2008 by a relative of Walker's third wife.

SNP headquarters were then informed of the points made at the meeting, the party confirmed last night.

Walker, elected as the SNP MSP for Dunfermline in 2011, was expelled from the party earlier this month after an investigation by this newspaper into his past.

Three former wives allege he was violent towards them during the marriages, including allegations of punches, kicks, slaps and a beating with a metal coat-hanger.

Court documents also show that Walker admitted hitting his teenage former step-daughter over the head with a saucepan, as well as smacking the son of his then girlfriend.

In 1990, he was accused by Lord Clyde of "deception" during a case relating to payments to his children, while in a separate ruling Judge Dyer described Walker as a "bully" and a "tyrant in his own home".

The SNP's knowledge of Walker's violent history is now in the spotlight.

Rob Armstrong, the former brother-in-law of the MSP's third wife, said he contacted the party in 2008 after Walker was elected as a councillor.

In an exclusive interview with the Sunday Herald, the retired pilot said: "I requested a meeting with Nicola Sturgeon through her MSP constituency office near Kinning Park, Glasgow.

"I wanted to provide her with information about Walker relating to instances of violence towards two women and a teenage girl.

"There were also instances of violence towards a young boy to whom I am related."

Armstrong, 66, said he was then "granted a meeting" in Sturgeon's Glasgow office, but it was with one of the MSP's workers. He said he read out the two judges' comments and gave her old newspaper cuttings, one of which contained allegations of violence against two wives and the former step-daughter.

He said the woman's reaction seemed initially sceptical, but added: "However, as I read from various documents which included judicial comment she realised that there were disturbing aspects that clearly she had been unaware of, and as such so was the SNP.

"She assured me that the documents and the substance of our discussion would be passed on, I think, to the 'Executive'."

He continued: "While not giving a definite assurance, she expected that I would be contacted by someone in that capacity."

However, despite the session lasting more than an hour, he said "nobody of any rank ever contacted me subsequent to that meeting".

In a statement, an SNP spokesperson said: "Mr Armstrong visited Ms Sturgeon's constituency office in February 2008 and spoke with a member of staff, primarily about a child access issue. As it did not relate to the work of the constituency, the staff member quite properly informed party headquarters of the points made.

"As we have made clear, we cannot comment further until the process is at an end, which will be when any appeal is lodged and properly discharged. At that time we will make a full statement."

After being read the SNP response, Armstrong said last night: "It is a totally inaccurate assessment of that meeting. The purpose of the meeting was purely about Bill Walker."

Although Sturgeon's office and SNP HQ had been made aware of Walker's past, the alleged wife-beater was still selected to fight Dunfermline. He was expelled after the party's disciplinary committee ruled that he had not declared the allegations during the Holyrood candidate process.

A police inquiry has also been launched into the allegations, including a rape claim from decades ago. Fife Constabulary has contacted Walker's ex-wives about the alleged violence.

Despite the expulsion, which he can still appeal, Walker has said he will not quit the Scottish Parliament and appeared at Holyrood during the week.

Speaking to a local newspaper last week, he said: "I completely deny any allegations of violence against my ex-wives. One of them attacked me with a dagger and I had to wrestle her to the ground and part of that I think consisted of giving her a slap on the face."

Tory MSP Murdo Fraser said: "This is hugely embarrassing for the SNP. Bill Walker was expelled on the basis that he did not disclose relevant information during the candidate process, but it now appears that some people in the SNP were made aware of issues in his background.

"There are serious questions for the SNP to consider about this matter, especially on why they did not act on the information provided about Bill Walker's past."