Belfast Telegraph

UK Website Of The Year

Home News UK

Ex-football coach Bennell denies charges of child abuse

By PA Reporters

Former football coach Barry Bennell has denied eight child abuse offences.

Bennell (63), wearing a blue polo neck shirt and appearing via video-link at Chester Crown Court from HMP Woodhill, answered "not guilty" to all the charges as they were put to him.

The former Crewe Alexandra coach denies seven counts of indecent assault on a boy and one count of attempted buggery.

All the offences are alleged to have happened between 1981 and 1986, when the victim was under the age of 16.

Around 30 members of the media sat in the Press benches for the brief hearing.

Most of the hearing was taken up with administrative matters until Bennell was remanded into custody until March 20 for a further hearing to take place.

Owen Edwards, prosecuting, told the court: "I have had an opportunity to speak to the complainant; at the moment he preserves his anonymity."

Judge Roger Dutton reminded the Press and members of the public in court that any identification of the alleged complainant "will be treated very seriously" by the courts.

Bennell worked as a coach for Crewe Alexandra, Manchester City, Stoke and junior teams in north-west England and the Midlands during his career in football.

Belfast Telegraph

Popular

From Belfast Telegraph