Friday, 22 June, 2018

Ex-coach Barry Bennell guilty of further child sex abuse

Manchester City said they had identified serious allegations of child sex abuse “in respect of two identifiable individuals” Manchester City said they had identified serious allegations of child sex abuse “in respect of two identifiable individuals”PA
Frederick Owens | 16 February, 2018, 03:02

Bennell, who will be sentenced on Monday 19 February has pleaded guilty at the start of the trial to seven further offences.The offences relate to 12 victims and took place between 1979 and 1989.

Bennell, who had part of his tongue removed due to cancer, appeared in court via videolink for health reasons and declined to give evidence in his own defense.

SERIAL paedophile Barry Bennell has been convicted of abusing more young footballers after grooming them with claims that he could fulfil their dreams of a career in the sport.

He could be seen shaking his head and muttering when the final guilty verdicts were returned by a 10-1 majority.

He was found guilty on Tuesday of 36 charges of sex abuse against 10 complainants.

During the trial, the judge, Recorder of Liverpool, Clement Goldstone QC, had directed the jury to find Bennell not guilty on three charges of indecent assault.

The trust was launched in November 2016 after fellow victim Andy Woodward waived his anonymity to detail his abuse at the hands of Bennell.

Bennell was said by another complainant to have been treated like "God" at City's Maine Road stadium.

He said: "You have been, if I may say so, a credit to the jury system" and told them if they wished they could be excused from jury service for the next 15 years.

"For decades, we held our silence, just like our abuser told us", Micky Fallon, one of the victims, said outside court.

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Mr Woodward said he believed "the football clubs that were accountable for this. could have stopped this for so many years".

"Today justice was done and you no longer have any power over us".

"We suggest Mr Bennell is a child molester on an industrial scale", prosecutor Nicholas Johnson said in his closing speech, "and that's why he went to these lengths to get so many lads round to his house".

Boys were abused at his home - including a property in Derbyshire where he had arcade games and a puma and a monkey - on trips away, and in his vehicle on the way to and from training, they said.

As well as identifying Bennell's activities, the review uncovered a second man called John Broome - who is now dead - but is not believed to be linked to Bennell.

"Whilst Manchester City FC is restricted as to what it can make public at present, the Club can confirm that to date, the Review Team has identified serious allegations of child sex abuse in respect of two identifiable individuals with potential historic connections to Manchester City".

His former teammates at the Crewe Alexandra youth team, which was trained by Bennell, said the coach accused him of stealing money - a tactic against boys who tried to escape his advances.

"As a football coach he should have provided nothing more than safety and support for the players in his care", she said.

Man City offered its "heartfelt sympathy to all victims for the unimaginably traumatic experiences they have endured".

One of Bennell's victims said he was targeted "straight away" in Bennell's Mercedes auto when he started to give him lifts to and from City's then training ground at Platt Lane.

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