John Leslie cleared of sexual assault charge

Former Blue Peter presenter John Leslie has been cleared of sexual assault charges.

The 55-year-old was cleared by a jury at Southwark Crown Court of grabbing a woman’s breasts at a Christmas party in 2008.

The verdict was delivered after 23 minutes of deliberation, with Leslie crying and nodding towards the jury.

Judge Deborah Taylor said: ‘Mr Stott, you for the second time leave this court without a stain on your character and I hope it will be the last time you have to attend.’

Leslie was hugged by his father, Les Scott, who has attended court every day for the past week, upon leaving the dock.

During the trial, his former co-star Anthea Turner defended him, giving evidence on his character.

Turner, 60, told the court: ‘I know John incredibly well and I am standing here today because I know John very well, and I would just like to mention, when he asked me to come I wanted to be here. This is very important.’ 

When asked about his behaviour around women she stated: ‘I am a woman, he was always respectful, incredibly respectful, with myself.’ 

The TV presenter said the team at Blue Peter were majority female and ‘everybody loved him’, adding that Leslie was ‘absolutely adored by every woman I knew that worked with him’.

This story is being updated.

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