Belfast Telegraph

Tuesday 22 July 2014

Juror 'committed sex crime during break for lunch'

A juror sitting on a sexual assault case went out during his lunch break and committed a sex crime himself, a court heard.

Former soldier Alan Edwards was serving as a juror in the case of a sexual assault on a teenage girl, Bristol Crown Court heard yesterday.

On the third day of the case, he went to a city law firm's office and molested the receptionist.

Edwards, 58, of the Portway, Shirehampton, in Bristol, pleaded not guilty by reason of insanity to a sexual assault charge, court staff confirmed today.

A jury of seven men and five women yesterday returned a unanimous not guilty verdict, agreeing he was not in control of his actions at the time.

But it was accepted he committed the act, and Judge Simon Darwall-Smith adjourned the case to sentence him accordingly.

Judge Darwall-Smith told Edwards he must register as a sex offender.

The court heard psychiatric consultants concluded Edwards was suffering psychotic symptoms at the time of the incident.

He will be sentenced next month at Bristol Crown Court on a date to be fixed.