Bramble denies sex-assault charges
Sunderland defender Titus Bramble appeared in court on Friday to deny sexual assault charges.
The 30-year-old is accused of indecently touching two women in separate incidents during a night out in Yarm, Teesside, on September 28 last year.
Bramble, of Wellington Drive, Wynyard, near Middlesbrough, appeared at Teesside Crown Court for a plea and directions hearing. The prosecution said it was changing the indictment to add a fourth sexual assault charge which stems from the original two incidents. He denies all four charges.
In the first he is accused of indecently touching one alleged victim.
In the second count, he is alleged to have touched another woman's leg and moved his hand towards her crotch without consent.
In the last two counts, he is accused of twice placing her hand on his crotch.
Bramble, who wore a dark suit, white shirt and blue tie for the brief hearing, spoke in a clear voice to say "Not guilty" after each count was put to him.
Bramble started his career at Ipswich and also played for Newcastle and Wigan before signing for Sunderland.
Judge Peter Fox, the Recorder of Middlesbrough, adjourned the case to be tried on May 28.
The trial could last up to a week. Bramble was granted unconditional bail.