Tyne & Wear

Youth coach George Ormond jailed for sexually abusing boys

George Ormond
Image caption George Ormond was convicted of 36 offences

A former Newcastle United youth team aid has been jailed for 20 years after being convicted of a string of sex abuse offences spanning 25 years.

George Ormond, 62, coached a grassroots football club in the 1970s and 1980s before going on to work for United's youth system in the 1990s.

Newcastle Crown Court heard he used his "position of power" to abuse 18 boys and young men between 1973 and 1998.

He was convicted of 35 charges of indecent assault and one of indecency.

Ormond, who the court was told has been living at temporary addresses in Gateshead, was cleared of two further charges following a six-week trial.

The jury was told Ormond "manipulated his position" and held out a "glittering future" to young players, but could block their progress if they stood up to him.

How a hidden tape helped catch George Ormond

He would indecently touch boys while massaging them or treating them for injuries and insist they not wear anything under their shorts, then check they had followed the rule.

Judge Edward Bindloss described Ormond as "wholly preoccupied with sex" and said he "used his position as a respected football coach to target boys and young men in his care".

He said: "Some victims you do not even remember - what was for you momentary sexual gratification was for your victims a lifetime of difficulty."

Image copyright Northumbria Police
Image caption George Ormond was also jailed in 2002 for sex offences

Victims' statements described their shame and embarrassment, and in some cases deep regret that they had not spoken out earlier.

One said his ambition had been to become a footballer but "that dream turned into a living nightmare".

Judge Bindloss said: "No-one observing this trial could have failed to have been moved by the complainants and other witnesses over the six weeks of evidence.

"[They were] largely men in their 50s, largely from working class and sporting backgrounds, speaking with calm and quiet dignity about how they failed to understand what was happening to them.

"And because of the times they lived in, and due to their circumstances, they were unable to speak about it."

Image caption Former Newcastle United player Derek Bell was abused by George Ormond but was "too scared" to speak out at the time

In 2002 Ormond was jailed for six years after being found guilty of abusing seven boys under 16 between 1975 and 1999.

Defending Ormond, Rebecca Trowler QC, said he had not been in trouble since his release from prison in 2006.

He had been living off his savings, and his only close relationship now was with his mother, who was in her 80s.

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