Ex-BBC presenters guilty of sex offences

Tony and Julie Wadsworth
The husband and wife duo were employed in BBC local radio at the time of the alleged offences.

Two former BBC radio presenters have been found guilty of indecently assaulting under-age boys in the 1990s.

Husband and wife Tony and Julie Wadsworth were found guilty by a majority verdict of encouraging boys to take part in sexual activity.

The pair were also convicted at Warwick Crown Court of outraging public decency by having sex in woodland.

She admitted having sexual encounters with “young men” but repeatedly denied they were were under age.

They were each jailed for five years.

Following a three-week trial, Julie Wadsworth, 60, was convicted by majority 10-2 verdicts of nine indecent assaults against boys and five counts of outraging public decency.

Her spouse, 69, who acted as a “look-out”, was found guilty of the same charges, also by majority verdicts.

Both were found not guilty of three counts of indecent assault, two of which related to a single complainant.

The husband and wife duo were employed in BBC local radio at the time of the alleged offences.

Giving evidence in his defence, Mr Wadsworth described two separate encounters involving up to three males each time.

He told the court they appeared to be “16, 17 – possibly 18”.

Mr Wadsworth described a claim he had illegal sexual encounters as “outrageous”, and denied a prosecution allegation he had a threesome with his wife and a boy at his then home in Warwickshire.

When describing the couple’s first encounter in the woods with one of the complainants, Mr Wadsworth said he found it “erotic” to watch his wife with the young stranger.

“She felt empowered as a woman,” he said.

He claimed he and his wife had been “kissing and cuddling” when they became aware of a young man watching them.

Mr Wadsworth, 69, said: “I turned, looked around and saw this fella and must confess it was something of a shock.

“It was clear what he was hoping to do. He came forward as I stepped to one side.”

He said the encounter took place without a word being exchanged.

He said: “After the heat of the moment was over, it was all very embarrassing and awkward.

“We tidied ourselves up and we all went our separate ways.”

Asked by his barrister Michelle Clarke why he allowed his wife to be approached by another man, Mr Wadsworth said her past with an abusive partner had left her insecure.

He told jurors he wanted to prove others found her sexually desirable.

“I think it’s fair to say that Julie was and to some extent still is today a damaged person,” he said.

“And as our relationship developed she began to confide in me and tell me about her abusive partner who was absolutely vile – the things he perpetrated on her.

“So I did my best to bring out the woman inside her, I suppose.”

Mrs Wadsworth has accepted going on to have a sexual relationship with the first complainant, after bumping into him some years later.

Her husband said he was angry when he discovered that tryst and rejected a Facebook friend request from the complainant in 2015.

He said the couple – who previously worked for BBC Leicester and Birmingham-based BBC WM – had taken part in a second woodland encounter involving three males.

Afterwards he said the couple agreed what was happening was “ridiculous, foolhardy and stupid and there would be no repetition”.

The couple, from Broughton Astley, Leicestershire, denied five counts of outraging public decency which allege they engaged in sexual activity “against a tree” in view of others between July 1992 and June 1996.

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

Source: bbc.co.uk

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