More sex charges against ex-coach

LONDON • A former youth coach at the heart of a child-sex scandal roiling English football has been charged with eight more counts of historical abuse, British prosecutors said on Tuesday.

Barry Bennell will appear in court in north-west England via video link next Monday to face the charges, which relate to two victims and are alleged to have taken place between 1980 and 1987.

Bennell, a convicted serial abuser who has served three jail terms for sex offences, has been charged with five counts of buggery with a boy under 16, two counts of indecent assault on a boy under 14 and one of indecent assault on a boy under 16.

The former Crewe Alexandra coach had previously been charged with seven counts of indecent assault on a boy and one count of attempted buggery.

Those offences were alleged to have taken place between 1981 and 1986, when the victim was under 16.

Bennell pleaded not guilty to those charges at Chester Crown Court in January and was remanded in custody until a further hearing on March 20.

"Today, March 7, former professional football coach Barry Bennell, 63, was informed that he has been charged with eight counts of non-recent child sexual abuse, following an investigation by Cheshire Police," a Crown Prosecution Service spokesman said on Tuesday.

Bennell worked as a coach for Crewe, now in the fourth tier of English football, as well as top-flight clubs Manchester City and Stoke, together with junior teams, during his football career.

Dozens of former players late last year alleged they had been sexually abused as youths or young players, triggering a scandal and soul-searching in English football.

AGENCE FRANCE-PRESSE

A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on March 09, 2017, with the headline 'More sex charges against ex-coach'. Print Edition | Subscribe