Northern Ireland

Larne man pleads guilty to sexually grooming a child

Antrim courthouse

A 34-year-old man from Larne has pleaded guilty to sexually grooming a child and a number of other offences.

John Workman, of Craigyhill, was facing 10 charges including eight counts of sexual activity with a child.

On the second day of his trial at Antrim Crown Court a defence lawyer asked that his client be re-arraigned on four of the counts.

One was meeting a child following sexual grooming and three were of sexual activity.

Standing in the dock, John Workman replied "guilty" when each of the four charges were put to him.

A prosecution lawyer said he was satisfied that the guilty pleas reflect the defendant's "culpability" and added that it wasn't in the "interests of justice to proceed" with the other counts.

The judge directed the jury to find Workman "guilty" of the four counts "by confession".

Victim impact report

Jurors were then directed to find the defendant "not guilty" on the remaining six counts.

The judge said he would record that the Crown will offer "no evidence" with regard to the other six counts.

Once the jury was discharged a prosecution lawyer told the court that a victim impact report would be required before sentencing.

The judge said that Workman would have to be issued with the notification requirements regarding the sex offenders register and he adjourned sentencing until the 28 February.

John Workman was released on continuing bail.

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