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Star pianist will face further sex charge
6:00am Thursday 12th September 2013 in News
Concert pianist John Briggs has been charged with a new allegation, claiming historic sexual abuse of a boy.
The world-famous musician will face the fresh allegation when he next appears at Bradford Crown Court.
Briggs, 65, of Little Lane, East Morton, has already appeared before a judge in connection with other alleged historic sex offences, including against boys.
The latest alleged victim contacted police after coverage of the earlier court proceedings in the Telegraph & Argus.
Briggs, who was awarded the MBE a decade ago for his community work, was bailed by Judge John Potter in July until a plea and case management hearing next month.
At a previous court hearing he had indicated he would plead not guilty to the offences alleged against him – three charges of indecently assaulting boys under 16; one charge of indecently assaulting a male aged 16 or over; and one charge of committing an act of gross indecency with or towards a boy under the age of 14.
Those offences are alleged to have taken place at his home in the early 1990s, and involved two boys under 16 and a male over that age.
Last month West Yorkshire Police confirmed that Briggs had been arrested, interviewed and released on bail in connection with the new allegation of sexually touching a male in the late 1970s.
A spokesman said yesterday: “A 65-year-old man has now been charged with a further allegation of sexual activity with a male under 16. The charge will be tied up with the previous allegations at the next court hearing in October.”
Briggs’ barrister, Nick Askins, told the crown court at the previous hearing that it would be disputed whether the alleged offences had occurred.
A trial date has been fixed for February 17 next year. The trial is scheduled to last ten days.
Bingley-born Briggs, a professional pianist and composer for more than 40 years, has played at prestigious venues across the world, including the ancient city of Petra, at the request of the Queen of Jordan.