Darlington man denies being a sexual predator

The Northern Echo: DENIES CHARGE: Leon Love DENIES CHARGE: Leon Love

A YOUNG father branded "an arrogant sexual predator" has tearfully told a jury that none of the allegations against him are true.

Leon Love, of Hartington Way, Darlington, wept on a number of occasions yesterday as he gave evidence and was cross-examined.

Mr Love, 26, is on trial at Teesside Crown Court accused of raping one young woman and sexually assaulting another after nights out.

He claims his first accuser initiated their sexual encounter after a party and told the jury that the second allegation was made up.

Speaking in a faltering voice, he also denied raping a third woman in similar circumstances - a charge he was cleared of four years ago.

Under cross-examination from prosecutor Richard Bennett, he said all three are telling lies - but could not explain why they would.

During Mr Bennett's opening speech last week, the barrister said Mr Love was either a sexual predator or a very unlucky person.

Yesterday, he accused the defendant of "telling a pack of lies" and of having a "selective memory" of the events surrounding the claims.

Mr Love sobbed as he denied the suggestions, and insisted other witnesses who have given evidence were also making it up.

Four people have said he was in a town centre bar where he is said to have told one of his accusers she looked "stunning".

Mr Love told the jury that he was not in the pub at all, and dismissed the claims about what he is alleged to have said.

He said his memory of the nights during which he is said to have abused the women was "vague" because of the passage of time.

He denied taking cocaine and giving the Class A drug to others - including an alleged victim - at one of the parties.

It is claimed that Mr Love forced himself on women as they slept following nights out and parties in 2009 and 2011.

Mr Bennett suggested Mr Love should have stayed away from such situations after being acquitted of the 2008 rape.

The jury of six men and six women is expected to retire today to consider its verdict after summing up from Judge Howard Crowson.

click2find

About cookies

We want you to enjoy your visit to our website. That's why we use cookies to enhance your experience. By staying on our website you agree to our use of cookies. Find out more about the cookies we use.

I agree