Ex football coach Barry Bennell was found guilty of 36 charges of sexual abuse at the Liverpool Crown Court yesterday.
Bennell 64, who is now known as Richard Jones, was convicted of 36 charges of sexual assaults against 10 boys aged between 8 to 15 years old in the 1980’s.
The jury which consisted of 5 men and 4 women was told that Bennell had previously served 3 prison sentences for abusing boys. The trial listed 5 weeks and to date the jury have spent 4 days deliberating their verdict.
The jury was asked to consider 48 charges against 11 complainants. Bennell denied all charges at the commencement of the trial. Bennell, who appeared at Court by video link, chose not to offer any evidence or witnesses in his Defence. The Court heard that he has told the Police that he is suffering from cancer which is causing him to have problems with his memory.
Liverpool Crown Court heard evidence describing Bennell as having a “power hold over aspiring players and abused them on an industrial scale.”
Prosecutors described Bennell as “the child catcher from Chitty Chitty Bang Bang.” Boys were abused at his home which the victims described as a “paradise for young boys” where they would be allowed to play on arcade games with exotic pets including a puma and a monkey.
One victim, Chris Unsworth, who was a junior player for his local team when Bennell was a scout for Manchester City, gave evidence to the Court that he had been raped by Bennell, “about half a dozen times.” Bennell was convicted of all 5 charges against Mr Unsworth when he was aged 8 to 14 years.
The Judge has directed the jury that he will accept a majority verdict on the 7 charges they are still considering. Four of these charges relate to an 11th victim.
Jordans Solicitors represent and obtain compensation for client’s who have suffered abuse whilst participating in youth football teams. If you have been affected by anything in this article please do not hesitate to contact us free om 03303 001103. We have successfully represented and secured compensation for numerous victims of abuse.