John Leslie denies grabbing woman’s breasts at party as sex assault trial starts

John Leslie’s sexual assault trial kicked off in London with a court hearing the star has been accused of grabbing a woman’s breasts at a Christmas party.

The former Blue Peter host, 55, from Edinburgh, has denied one count of sexual assault relating to unwanted sexual touching of a woman in 2008.

He arrived at Southwark Crown Court this morning for the start of the trial, which is expected to last three days.

Leslie was pictured arriving wearing a grey suit and matching flat cap with a blue tartan face mask.

The Scottish telly star held a hot drink in one hand and his mobile phone in the other.

John Leslie, pictured, arrives at Southwark Crown Court

The charge stems from an alleged incident at a Christmas party in London on 5 December 2008.

The court heard Leslie is accused of touching a woman’s breasts and laughing before walking away.

Prosecutor Jocelyn Ledward told the jury Leslie is accused of “grabbing” a young woman’s breasts shortly after he arrived at the bash.

She told the court he did this “quite deliberately for a period of a few seconds” before walking off.

Leslie, pictured centre, was accompanied by his father Les Stott, pictured right

The prosecutor said: “The woman was stunned but did not report it to the police.”

Ms Ledward said: “He [Leslie] denies he did any such thing and if there was any physical contact between them, then it must have been an accident.”

The alleged victim had spotted someone she recognised at the bar and went over to him, the court heard. It was John Leslie and he smiled.

Ms Ledward said: “She smiled back. Without saying anything further he grabbed both of her breasts with both of his hands and laughed as he did so.”

This went on for about “three seconds,” Ms Ledward told the court.

Leslie, pictured, held a hot drink in one hand as he headed into court

She said: “The prosecution say this was no accidental touching but a quite deliberate sexual assault.

“The defendant laughed again and then walked off as if what he had done was completely acceptable and was not something anyone was going to challenge him on.”

The presenter – whose full name is John Leslie Stott – denied the sexual assault charge and was released on unconditional bail back in 2019.

He had been due to stand trial in March, but the court case was pushed back until October.

Leslie is known for his stint presenting Blue Peter between 1989 and 1994,and he went on to host shows such as Wheel of Fortune and This Morning.

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