Brendan Rodgers' footballer son 'had pictures of sex assault on phone'
The Northern Irish manager of Liverpool football club watched from the public gallery of the Old Bailey as a woman claimed she found pictures of herself being sexually abused on a mobile phone belonging to his son.
The woman told the court how she woke up half-naked in a hotel bed next to footballer Anton Rodgers after a night out in Brighton. The accused is the son of Liverpool boss Brendan Rodgers from Carnlough.
She said she could not remember getting there and was horrified to find mobile phone pictures of four footballers assaulting her.
Anton Rodgers was asleep wearing only his boxers and when she woke him he seemed unconcerned, she told the Old Bailey.
The woman, who was 19 during the alleged assault in July 2011, gave evidence against the four players from behind a curtain.
She said she found the pictures after asking to use his phone.
Brighton and Hove Albion players Rodgers (19), Lewis Dunk (21), and George Barker (21), and former team-mate Steve Cook (21), now of Bournemouth FC, deny sexual assault. Rodgers, Barker and Cook also deny voyeurism.
The prosecution alleges the players took advantage of the teenager's unconscious state to commit sex acts and take pictures.
The woman said she woke up next to Rodgers, adding: “I felt ashamed, embarrassed. I couldn't believe it had happened.
“I started shaking Anton. I was saying ‘Why did you do this? I thought you were a nice guy'.
“I was angry. I told him to delete them. He said he was not going to delete them. He was not at all concerned.”
The woman said she reported the incident to police, naming the players six months later after another player at the club hinted at putting the images on YouTube.
She said she had visited four clubs that night but was not drunk despite drinking seven alcohol shots and sharing a bottle of beer.
The players took her to the hotel and assaulted her after celebrating a club victory, the prosecution has alleged.
She said in one picture, Barker had written GB in shaving foam on her buttocks and was posing with his thumbs up and smiling.
Rodgers locked himself in the bathroom with the phone and refused to give it to her.
The woman said she later became friends with another player at the club who told her he had seen the photographs and a video.
She added: “He did indicate he was going to upload them to YouTube. I felt angry.”
Richard Barton, prosecuting, said her reluctance to identify her attackers to police demonstrated she did not willingly take part to sell a “kiss and tell” story.
He added: “These were the actions of a group of arrogant young men labouring under the misguided belief that by reason of their privileged position they could with impunity take advantage of a young woman.”
The trial continues.