Ex-football coach Barry Bennell accused of eight offences of sexual assault

The former football coach Barry Bennell has been charged with eight offences of sexual assault against a child under the age of 14 years, the Crown Prosecution Service has said.

Bennell, 62 years of age, had been the subject of an investigation by detectives from Cheshire police. The offences allegedly committed between the years 1981 and 1985.

Bennell is due to appear at South Cheshire magistrates court on the 14th of December.

In a statement the CPS said: “on the 27th Of September 2016, the Crown Prosecution Service received a file of evidence from the Cheshire police concerning allegations of non-recent sexual abuse involving a former football coach, Barry Bennell.

“After a review of the evidence, in accordance with the Code for Crown Prosecutors, Mr. Bennell, 62, has today been charged with eight offences of sexual assault against a child under the age of 14 years.”

The crimes Bennell has been charged with five counts of indecent assault on a child under the age of 14 years, two counts of inciting a child under 14 to commit an act of serious indecency and assault with intent to commit sodomy.

Given the recent media coverage of claims of child sexual abuse in the football, the CPS called for restraint and said: “The Prosecutor reminds all concerned that criminal proceedings against Mr Bennell is going to begin now and that he has a right to a fair trial. It is very important that you should not reporting, commentary or sharing of information online which could in any way prejudice these proceedings.”