Dave Lee Travis retrial: DJ was a 'sexual opportunist' who thought he had 'right' to grope women, court hears

The former Radio 1 presenter is undergoing a retrial and denies all charges

Dave Lee Travis was a “sexual opportunist” who acted as if he had the “perfect right” to grope young women, a court has heard as the DJ’s retrial begins.

A jury was unable to reach a verdict on one charge of indecent assault between November 1990 and January 1991, and another of sexual assault on a different woman between June and November 2008, earlier this year.

The 69-year-old former Radio 1 DJ inappropriately touched several women who were “many years” younger than him over more than two decades, a jury at London's Southwark Crown Court heard on Friday.

Travis has pleaded not guilty to all charges, as well as an additional count of indecent assault in 1995.

The veteran DJ was arrested during Operation Yewtree in 2012, when investigators received several complaints about him following revelations about Jimmy Savile’s child abuse.

Miranda Moore QC, acting for the prosecution, said the allegations against him spanned a period from 1985 to 2008, allegedly when he was working as a DJ or entertainer in a pantomime, television show and during an interview with a journalist at his home.

“We say he has a propensity towards laying his hands in a sexual manner on young women who are alone with him or in vulnerable positions,” she added.

“He is an opportunist.”

BBC Radio 1 presenter Dave Lee Travis in his studio at Broadcasting House, London, 14 January 1980. BBC Radio 1 presenter Dave Lee Travis in his studio at Broadcasting House, London, 14 January 1980. Although the charges only relate to three women, two others are being called as witnesses to describe similar alleged incidents.

Ms Moore said: “The defendant, according to these ladies, simply seemed to act as if he had a perfect right to touch their breasts or put his hands in their clothing to grope them.”

She claimed the women felt “upset, embarrassed, shocked” and unsure what to do because of Travis' celebrity status and their younger age.

The first charge relates to a woman in her 20s who was working on a production of Aladdin in which Travis was starring.

She claimed the DJ assaulted her while they were alone in his dressing room, holding the door closed as he put his hand inside her trousers.

She managed to prise open the door to the corridor - where comedy stars the Chuckle Brothers were standing - and escape, the court heard.

The second charge relates to an alleged assault by Travis on a young woman working on the Mrs Merton Show, who claims he put his hands on her chest for at least 10-15 seconds until she backed away.

Former BBC DJ Dave Lee Travis Former BBC DJ Dave Lee Travis In a third count, Travis is alleged to have groped a female journalist when she went to his home to interview him.

He touched her chest and held his hands there for several seconds, the court heard.

She later told her flatmates and her mother but did not take it any further because she did not want to jeopardise her career, Ms Moore said.

Another woman, to whom the charges do not relate, alleged she was sexually assaulted by Travis as she served him drinks at a venue on the Isle of Man, when he pinned her against a wall and put one hand on her chest and one between her legs.

She told a security guard, and later her husband, but both told her Travis was “just messing about”, Ms Moore said.

Another woman, also a journalist, claimed that Travis assaulted her while she was at his house to interview him by groping her chest after offering to take a picture of her in a bikini.

When her train pulled out of the station near the DJ’s home, she said: “The enormity of what had happened hit me and I suddenly felt very depressed and very lonely and exploited.”

She was dissuaded from telling the police by her mother and because she did not want to jeopardise her career.

Travis, who denies all charges, dismissed the allegations as "utter nonsense".

The trail continues.

Additional reporting by PA

Sport
The sun rises over St Andrews golf course, but will it be a new dawn for the Royal and Ancient Golf Club?
sportAnd it's Yes to women (at the R&A)
Arts and Entertainment
Liam Neeson said he wouldn't
tv

Liam Neeson's Downton dreams

Sport
A 'Sir Alex Feguson' tattoo
football

Arts and Entertainment
A spell in the sun: Emma Stone and Colin Firth star in ‘Magic in the Moonlight’
filmReview: Magic In The Moonlight
News
ebooksAn unforgettable anthology of contemporary reportage
Voices
voicesApple continually kill off smaller app developers, and that's no good for anyone
Arts and Entertainment
Ben Whishaw is replacing Colin Firth as the voice of Paddington Bear
tv

Thriller is set in the secret world of British espionage

Life and Style
life

News
ScienceGallery: Otherwise known as 'the best damn photos of space you'll see till 2015'
Life and Style
fashion

Bomber jacket worn by Mary Berry sells out within an hour

Travel
travelWhy Japan's love hotels are thriving through an economic downturn
Arts and Entertainment
Rapper Jay Z performs on the Pyramid Stage at Glastonbury in 2008
musicSinger sued over use of the single-syllable sample in 'Run This Town'
Life and Style
Alexander McQueen A/W 2014
fashionPolitics aside, tartan is on-trend again this season
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?

Day In a Page

Mystery of the Ground Zero wedding photo

A shot in the dark

Mystery of the wedding photo from Ground Zero
His life, the universe and everything

His life, the universe and everything

New biography sheds light on comic genius of Douglas Adams
Save us from small screen superheroes

Save us from small screen superheroes

Shows like Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D are little more than marketing tools
Reach for the skies

Reach for the skies

From pools to football pitches, rooftop living is looking up
These are the 12 best hotel spas in the UK

12 best hotel spas in the UK

Some hotels go all out on facilities; others stand out for the sheer quality of treatments
These Iranian-controlled Shia militias used to specialise in killing American soldiers. Now they are fighting Isis, backed up by US airstrikes

Widespread fear of Isis is producing strange bedfellows

Iranian-controlled Shia militias that used to kill American soldiers are now fighting Isis, helped by US airstrikes
Topshop goes part Athena poster, part last spring Prada

Topshop goes part Athena poster, part last spring Prada

Shoppers don't come to Topshop for the unique
How to make a Lego masterpiece

How to make a Lego masterpiece

Toy breaks out of the nursery and heads for the gallery
Meet the ‘Endies’ – city dwellers who are too poor to have fun

Meet the ‘Endies’ – city dwellers who are too poor to have fun

Urbanites are cursed with an acronym pointing to Employed but No Disposable Income or Savings
Paisley’s decision to make peace with IRA enemies might remind the Arabs of Sadat

Ian Paisley’s decision to make peace with his IRA enemies

His Save Ulster from Sodomy campaign would surely have been supported by many a Sunni imam
'She was a singer, a superstar, an addict, but to me, her mother, she is simply Amy'

'She was a singer, a superstar, an addict, but to me, her mother, she is simply Amy'

Exclusive extract from Janis Winehouse's poignant new memoir
Is this the role to win Cumberbatch an Oscar?

Is this the role to win Cumberbatch an Oscar?

The Imitation Game, film review
England and Roy Hodgson take a joint step towards redemption in Basel

England and Hodgson take a joint step towards redemption

Welbeck double puts England on the road to Euro 2016
Relatives fight over Vivian Maier’s rare photos

Relatives fight over Vivian Maier’s rare photos

Pictures removed from public view as courts decide ownership
‘Fashion has to be fun. It’s a big business, not a cure for cancer’

‘Fashion has to be fun. It’s a big business, not a cure for cancer’

Donatella Versace at New York Fashion Week