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Sussex police continue to investigate football abuse allegations

Testimony from former players prompts continuing abuse probe

Football players

9 August 2017

A Sussex newspaper has reported that the police are continuing to investigate two allegations of abuse by two different football coaches ten months on from receiving claims of abuse.

Testimony from three former professional football players in 2016 triggered 1,886 referrals to more than 20 police forces throughout the country concerning 741 alleged victims, 276 suspects and 328 football clubs.

Sussex Police has investigated ten reports alleging non-recent abuse in the county against ten individuals, by ten separate coaches.  The age of the victims ranges from seven to late teens, and the alleged offences date from the 1960s to the 2000s.

The force is working with the NSPCC over the allegations as part of Operation Hydrant, which was set up in 2014 to coordinate investigations into "non-recent" child sex abuse at a national level.

A Sussex Police spokesman said: "Each report was assessed by staff in our public protection department and then became subject of enquiries by officers from our locally-based safeguarding investigation units. Eight of investigations have resulted in no further action, and two, including the report received in July, remain under investigation."

Non-recent abuse claims solicitor at law firm Leigh Day, Alison Millar, said:

“I encourage anyone in the county who has suffered abuse as a junior player by a football coach to contact the Sussex police where they will be able to talk in confidence.” 

The NSPCC and English Football League have set up a dedicated helpline for victims of abuse in football which is available 24 hours a day on 0800 023 2642.

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