Tuesday 28 July 2015

DJ Dave Lee Travis acted as if he had 'perfect right' to grope women, court told

Published 05/09/2014 | 17:06

Veteran DJ Dave Lee Travis acted as if he had the "perfect right" to grope young women, a court has heard.

The 69-year-old former Radio 1 DJ inappropriately touched several women who were "many years" younger than him during a period spanning more than two decades, a jury at London's Southwark Crown Court was told today.

Travis, who is charged under his real name David Griffin, is standing trial on three charges.

He faces a retrial on two counts - one of indecent assault of a woman between November 1 1990 and January 31 1991, and another of sexual assault on a different woman between June 1 2008 and November 30 2008 - on which a jury was unable to reach verdicts at a trial earlier this year.

He has also pleaded not guilty to an additional count of indecent assault alleged to have taken place on January 17 1995.

Opening the trial, prosecutor Miranda Moore QC told a jury of six men and six women that allegations were made to the Operation Yewtree investigation team about the time of an airing of a television expose of Jimmy Savile in October 2012.

Former BBC Radio 1 DJ Dave Lee Travis leaves court in London. Reuters
Former BBC Radio 1 DJ Dave Lee Travis leaves court in London. Reuters

"A number of women came forward after this defendant indicated on television and radio that he, Dave Lee Travis, was innocent of any such behaviour,” he said.

Ms Moore said the allegations spanned a period from 1985 to 2008 and were alleged to have taken place when Travis was working as a DJ or entertainer, such as starring in a pantomime, or as a guest celebrity, or in his own home as he was being interviewed.

"The offences that you are going to consider vary in seriousness. They involved unwanted physical contact over and under clothing,” she continued.

"We say ... he has a propensity towards laying his hands in a sexual manner on young women who are alone with him or in vulnerable positions.

"He is an opportunist."

Ms Moore said the jury would hear from three women to whom the charges relate, as well as two other women who would describe similar incidents to support the descriptions of Travis's alleged behaviour. All were in their 20s.

"The defendant, according to these ladies, simply seemed to act as if he had a perfect right to touch their breasts or put his hands in their clothing to grope them,” she said.

She said the women felt "upset, embarrassed, shocked" and unsure what to do because Travis was a celebrity and they were younger and in no position to make a complaint.

Outlining the allegations, Ms Moore said the first charge related to a woman who claimed he put his hands inside her trousers while she was working on a production of Aladdin in which Travis was starring.

He dismissed her allegations as "utter nonsense", the court heard.

The second charge relates to an alleged assault by Travis on a young woman working on the Mrs Merton Show. It his claimed he put his hands on her chest for at least 10 to 15 seconds after commenting about her “poor little lungs” as she smokes in the corridor.

In a third count, Travis is alleged to have groped a female journalist when she went to his home to interview him. He touched her chest, holding his hands there for several seconds, the court heard.

She later told her flatmates and her mother but did not take it any further because she did not want to jeopardise her career, Ms Moore said.

Ms Moore told the jury that Travis, who was arrested on October 24 2012, had denied all of the incidents, saying none of them happened.

"He has suggested that possibly the women have come forward motivated by greed or compensation or possibly fame," she said. "He has not thought to say that any of these incidents was consensual or that he made an honest mistake or that it was a joke.

"When spoken to by police he was adamant that he knows where the line is drawn and how one should behave and he never crossed it."

Travis, wearing a dark jacket and patterned tie, listened intently to the prosecution opening, occasionally shook his head as the case unfolded.

 

Read More

Promoted articles

Editors Choice

Also in World News