The trial of the former broadcaster and convicted paedophile Stuart Hall has heard that he raped a young girl “at least 30 times” after plying her with alcohol and that she “didn’t think she had a choice”.
Giving evidence for the first time at Preston Crown Court today, the first of two alleged victims said she had come forward because she felt Hall’s previous sentencing of 30 months for indecent assaults was “not long enough”.
The woman described how she was “always drunk” when she was raped by Hall, on one occasion when she was 14 at the BBC studios in Oxford Road, Manchester, and then repeatedly when aged 15 and 16 at another BBC studio in Piccadilly in Manchester city centre.
She told the court she “didn’t know” whether she had wanted to have sex with Hall. “I might have thought I was a very wordly know-it-all 15-year-old but in reality I was not,” she said. “I hope I am a lot wiser now.”
Peter Wright QC, prosecuting, asked her if she felt she had a choice in going to the TV studio, having drinks with Hall, having sex with him and then repeating the process.
She replied “no” on each occasion, adding: “I don't think I had the capacity to think I had a choice at that time.”
A former BBC sports commentator and presenter of It’s A Knockout, 84-year-old Hall was jailed last year after he pleaded guilty to 14 offences of indecent assault against 13 girls, aged nine to 17, at the same court and was jailed for 15 months.
The sentence was subsequently increased to 30 months at the Court of Appeal. The woman today said her motivation for coming forward was “because, this is no disrespect to the system, I just feel it was not long enough for what he did”.
She said: “I felt for those girls because I know and I understand what it's like, and I just felt it was an insult to them. I don't want to be here, I'm not going to lie about that. But I want justice I suppose.”
The jury heard that the woman’s solicitors had written to the defendant's solicitors as part of a civil claim in which they asked for £20,000 in “a full and final settlement”. In cross-examining the complainant, Crispin Aylett QC said she had been “after compensation”.
The woman replied that she was not a “gold digger”, and said: “If I was purely after compensation do you really honestly believe I would have put myself through this yesterday and today, and now knowing that it is all out in the open?”
Hall has pleaded not guilty to all 20 allegations of rape and indecent assault he currently faces, alleged to have taken place between 1976 and 1981.
On Tuesday he pleaded guilty to one count of indecent assault between 1978 and 1979 against the second alleged victim of the present trial, when she was aged under 16.
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