Tuesday 12 December 2017

‘This is a joke’ says Corrie star Le Vell upon hearing rape accusations, court hears

Coronation Street actor Michael Le Vell leaves Manchester Crown Court at the end of the second day of his trial for a series of child sex offences
Coronation Street actor Michael Le Vell leaves Manchester Crown Court at the end of the second day of his trial for a series of child sex offences

THE mum of a girl who claims she was raped by Michael Le Vell claims the Coronation Street star told her he thought she was joking when she first put the allegations to him, a court has heard.

The mother of the alleged victim broke down in tears as she described the moment her daughter told her about the alleged abuse.

Le Vell, 48, who plays car mechanic Kevin Webster in the ITV soap, is facing 12 charges in all - five counts of rape, three of indecent assault, two counts of sexual activity with a child and two of causing a child to engage in sexual activity.

Today the victim's mother sobbed as she relived the moment when she heard about the allegations for the first time.

She told Eleanor Laws QC, prosecuting, that her daughter said: "I just remember all the times he (Le Vell) raped me."

She said her daughter spoke about the alleged abuse after attending a self-help conference and that her daughter was "very calm" and told her that she remembered the alleged attacks "all the time".

The woman, who cannot be identified, broke down in the witness box and shakily took a drink of water before carrying on.

Asked by Ms Laws what she thinks happened to her daughter, she replied: "I believe he (Le Vell) had molested and abused her on a regular basis and there have been a number of rapes."

The alleged victim finished giving evidence from behind a screen at Manchester Crown Court this morning and cannot be identified for legal reasons.

Earlier Alisdair Williamson, defending Le Vell, questioned the girl's story and motivations, and accused her of lying.

At the end of her evidence Ms Laws said to the girl: "Have you some sort of vendetta, any reason to hate Michael Le Vell or bring him down and cause him all of this?"

"No," she replied.

The girl's mother described how she went to Le Vell and confronted him after her daughter told her of the alleged abuse.

She told the court she said to Le Vell: "She's made an accusation. You raped her when she was younger."

She told the court: "Before I finished that sentence he said, 'Oh you are joking! This is a joke! It's a joke! You are having a laugh!'"

Ms Laws asked the witness: "Did he ask what she said?"

The girl's mother replied: "He never asked what she said."

She said her daughter later told her how Le Vell used a teddy bear against her mouth while raping her and he would force the girl to give him oral sex.

The witness said: "In the car she said, 'It's happened a lot more than I'm making out Mummy. It's a lot worse.'

"She said, Mummy, you don't want to know.'"

Alisdair Williamson, defending Le Vell, asked the witness about a call she made to police, where she was "very upset" with the investigation and was asking officers if she could sell her story "to the papers".

The witness replied: "I chose not to do that."

The case was adjourned until 2.30pm tomorrow.

By Pat Hurst and Paul Keaveny

Online Editors

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