THE heir to the Greggs bakery chain has been found guilty of nine counts of indecently assaulting boys.

Colin Gregg, 75, was found guilty of offences involving four victims which happened over a 30 year period between the 1960s and the 1990s.

Gregg, of Gosforth, Newcastle, showed no reaction as he stood in the dock at Leeds Crown Court for the verdicts today, which were returned after almost 12 hours of jury deliberations.

Gregg helped to build up the family business in the 1960s but later became a teacher and a social worker. He will sentenced at later date.

Gregg was granted bail and will be sentenced at Newcastle Crown Court on March 30 at 2pm.

The jury found Gregg guilty by a majority on eight of the counts and unanimously on the ninth.

Judge Robin Mairs told him that the fact he was granting bail was no indication of sentence.

He said: "These are serious matters and a custodial sentence is inevitable."

The trial at Leeds was a retrial.

A jury failed to reach a verdict when Gregg was tried last year in Newcastle.

John Dilworth, from CPS North East, said after the case: “Throughout his life Colin Gregg has been a successful businessman, respected teacher and committed charity worker.

"Those achievements have won him the gratitude of the community but, beneath his respectable veneer, Colin Gregg was sexually abusing young boys with alarming regularity.

“Colin Gregg exploited his position in society to abuse young boys, using them for his own sexual gratification.

"Working closely with investigating police we have been able to demonstrate not only a distinct pattern to Colin Gregg’s offending, but also a propensity on his part to commit such acts.

“I would like to praise the bravery of the victims in this case; it is thanks largely to their evidence that the court has today found Colin Gregg guilty of nine charges of non-recent sexual assault, charges for which he had evaded justice for a considerable number of years.”