Coronation Street star Bill Roache will 'vigorously protest his innocence' over child sex charges
The veteran actor and Coronation Street star Bill Roache has vowed to “vigorously protest his innocence” over “deeply upsetting” child sex charges, his lawyer said today.
Lawyer Brian Russell was speaking outside Preston Magistrates' Court as the actor arrived to face new charges linked to allegations made in the wake of publicity surrounding his original arrest last month.
Roache, 81, who plays Ken Barlow in the ITV soap, has been charged with five indecent assaults on four girls between 1965 and 1968.
He is accused of sexually assaulting girls aged between 11 or 12 and 16, the Crown Prosecution Service said on Thursday night.
Roache was charged last month with raping a 15-year-old girl in 1967. He has issued a statement saying he “strenuously” denied those allegations.
Bill Roache is the world's longest serving soap star having appeared in Coronation Street since it was first broadcast in 1960. He will not appear in the show until legal proceedings are concluded.
Speaking this morning as they arrived at court, Mr Roache's lawyer said: “Yesterday Mr Roache was interviewed at length at the police station and, as you know, was then charged with five offences of indecent assault.
“These allegations arose out of the publicity that was generated when Mr Roache was interviewed on May 1 for offences of rape.
“So during two lengthy police interviews Mr Roache has fully co-operated with all the questions that the police have had for him in relation to these matters.
“Today we expect those cases to be transferred to the Crown Court and there will be another appearance of a short nature on Monday.
“We expect that later this year, or possibly early next year, a jury will be asked to consider whether Mr Roache is guilty or not guilty of those charges.
“Mr Roache looks forward to standing before that jury where he will vigorously protest his innocence against what he regards as deeply upsetting allegations made against him.
“Ladies and gentlemen, I can't go into any more detail, it would be inappropriate at this stage.”
California teacher appears to have hanged herself in her classroom
The City of the Monkey God: Archaeologists claim to have found city lost for 1,000 years in remote Honduran jungle
Ed Miliband less influential than One Direction's Louis Tomlinson by official Doncaster power list
Japanese island overrun with cats after population explodes
Delhi bus rapist blames dead victim for attack because 'girls are responsible for rape'
'Jihadi John': CAGE representative storms off Sky News accusing Kay Burley of Islamophobia
Durham Free School: 'Creationism taught at' free school facing closure
Nearly 100,000 of Britain's poorest children go hungry after parents' benefits are cut
Ukip would cut billions from Scottish budget to fund English tax cuts
End of the licence fee: BBC to back radical overhaul of how it is funded
Ukraine crisis: Top Chinese diplomat backs Putin and says West should 'abandon zero-sum mentality'
- 1 What happens to your body when you give up sugar?
- 2 Ed Miliband less influential than One Direction's Louis Tomlinson by official Doncaster power list
- 3 Japanese island overrun with cats after population explodes
- 4 Delhi bus rapist blames dead victim for attack because 'girls are responsible for rape'
- 5 Have sex with your iPad thanks to the new sex toy no-one asked for