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  • Dec 20, 2014
  • Updated: 7:10am
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BRITAIN

Broadcaster Stuart Hall raped girls in BBC dressing room, court is told

Prosecution claims Stuart Hall made under-age girls his personal 'playthings'

PUBLISHED : Thursday, 08 May, 2014, 9:23pm
UPDATED : Thursday, 08 May, 2014, 9:26pm
 

Former broadcaster Stuart Hall repeatedly plied two young teenage girls with drink and raped them in his BBC dressing room, a court heard.

Hall made them his personal playthings, "wholly submissive to his sexual demands", prosecutors claimed as they opened their case against the 84-year-old broadcasting veteran.

He poured champagne on the naked body of one alleged victim and took a cutting of her pubic hair as a trophy, Preston Crown Court in northwest England heard.

Hall is charged with 15 rapes and five indecent assaults against two complainants known only as Girl A and Girl B, who were under 16 - the age of consent - when the alleged abuse began in the late 1970s.

The presenter's lawyer said given their ages, the jury had to consider whether, legally, what happened was unlawful sex "somewhere between rape and consent".

Hall presented the hit BBC television show It's a Knockout in the 1970s and 1980s, fronted regional news programmes and was a soccer commentator. He is one of a string of British celebrities from that era to face investigation for sexual offences.

He is already serving a 30-month prison sentence after admitting indecently assaulting 13 young girls or women.

On Wednesday prosecutor Peter Wright told the court Hall "exploited the position of influence he had over each [girl] for his own sexual gratification".

Speaking of the first alleged rape, Girl A told the court that when she was 14 or 15, Hall had given her a tour of the BBC studios in Manchester, plied her with rum and cola until she was "paralytic", then "one thing led to another".

"I remember him being on top of me, I remember his tongue being everywhere. I just went along with it," she said.

In cross-examination, she said Hall was charming and "good company".

Hall's lawyer Crispin Aylett asked her: "He didn't rape you, did he?" She said: "Not as such. I would not say he attacked me."

Earlier, prosecutor Wright said that in the first alleged offence against Girl B, Hall "approached her in the stables, partially removed her clothing and raped her against a wall".

Hall's lawyer Aylett told the jury that "to everyone now", the presenter was "simply a convicted paedophile".

But "whatever his shortcomings ... and none of this should have happened - he says 'I am not a rapist'."

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