Coventry & Warwickshire

Wadsworth trial: Ex-BBC presenter 'victim of tabloid-style attack'

Julie and Tony Wadsworth Image copyright PA
Image caption The alleged assaults are said to have taken place between 1992 and 1996

Former BBC presenter Julie Wadsworth, accused of sex offences against under-age boys, is the victim of "poisonous and untrue" allegations, her defence claims.

At Warwick Crown Court her barrister accused the prosecution of launching a "tabloid attack" against her.

Mrs Wadsworth and her husband Tony are on trial accused of indecently assaulting seven boys in the 1990s.

The couple deny the offences and charges of outraging public decency.

Mrs Wadsworth's barrister, David Hislop QC, criticised the prosecutions use of a "Naughty but Nice" charity calendar, in which Mrs Wadsworth posed as Lady Godiva, to suggest her career was forged "on the twang of a stocking".

He suggested the prosecution used the calendar because of "shortcomings in their evidence".

Image copyright PA
Image caption The prosecution has been accused of "scraping the barrel"

Mr Hislop claimed that prejudice and emotion had infected the investigation into allegations against the couple who previously worked for BBC Leicester and Birmingham-based BBC WM.

He stressed to the jury that Mrs Wadsworth was not on trial to assess her morals.

She accepts having sexual encounters with "young men" but denies they were underage.

The couple, from Broughton Astley in Leicestershire, are charged with five counts of outraging public decency alleging they engaged in sexual activity "against a tree" in woodland in Warwickshire in view of others between July 1992 and June 1996. They deny the charges.

Mrs Wadsworth has pleaded not guilty to 11 charges of indecent assault, while her husband denies nine counts of the same offence.

The trial continues.

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