Barry Bennell found guilty of sexually abusing youth footballers

Former Manchester City and Crewe Alexandra coach convicted on historical charges

The former football coach Barry Bennell has been found guilty of multiple sexual offences against boys whom he targeted in the youth football set-ups of Manchester City and Crewe Alexandra.

Bennell, 64, was convicted of 36 charges at Liverpool crown court and the jury has asked for more time to consider further counts. He was found not guilty of three charges.

He had denied the allegations, which relate to 11 boys, who were aged eight to 14, from between 1979 and 1990, when he was renowned as one of football’s more successful youth-team coaches and talent spotters.

Bennell, who appeared in the court via video-link, had already pleaded guilty to seven charges involving three boys and has previously served three prison sentences in England and the US.

He was described by the prosecution as a “devious paedophile” who had “pretty much unfettered access” to young footballers, but his defence had argued that the alleged victims have made up the claims for attention and possible compensation.

More details soon …

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