Friday 25 March 2016

Adam Johnson Sentenced To Six Years In Prison

Adam Johnson has been sentenced to six years in prison for child sex offences. The former England and Sunderland player was sentenced by Judge Jonathan Rose at Bradford Crown Court on Thursday. Johnson was found guilty on March 2 of one count of sexual activity with a child and cleared of one further count, but has indicated he will appeal the guilty verdict.

He had previously pleaded guilty to two other charges of kissing and grooming the girl, who was 15 at the time of the offences. Johnson has been ordered to pay £50,000 in prosecution costs alone and has signed the sex offenders register, on which he will remain for the rest of his life. The judge imposed a restraining order preventing Johnson contacting the victim or her family.

Johnson arrived at court around 9.45am on Thursday and the hearing began at 10.30am before statements were read out by the victim and her mother. The victim, who was said in court to have attempted to take her own life during the trial, said it has had and continues to have a massive impact on my life and admitted she was still being subjected to bullying. The mother said their family take no satisfaction in how this has affected Adam Johnson, his family, and football fans.

Johnson is willing to enter a treatment program to make sure he does not offend again, the court heard. The NSPCC have written to the FA to make sure clubs are fully aware of child protection issues. “Adam Johnson's behaviour throughout this sordid affair was horrifying, inexcusable and made worse by his not guilty pleas which forced his victim to suffer the harrowing experience of giving evidence in court. But this was not only about one rogue player. It was also about a club that seemingly did not have child protection priorities embedded in its culture. It was worrying that child safeguarding took second place to getting results on the pitch. That can never be allowed to happen again at any club”.

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