Halifax teacher guilty of seven sex charges including stroking schoolgirl’s leg.

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A TEACHER has been found guilty of engaging in sexual activity with a schoolgirl.

William Drury, of Chester Road, Boothtown, ran his hand up the 16-year-old pupil’s inner thigh as she turned around to show him slogans her friends had written on her shirt on the last day of term, a jury ruled.

The 48-year-old was also convicted of making six indecent images of her and two other schoolgirls.

A jury at Leeds Crown Court took 5 hours and 42 minutes to find Drury guilty of those charges by a unanimous verdict.

They cleared him of one count of inciting the same girl to perform a sex act on a 17-year-old boy in a store cupboard at the Leeds school where he taught English and drama.

Jurors are still deliberating over the other six charges: two counts of causing a child to engage in sexual activity by a person in a position of trust; two counts of inciting a child to engage in sexual activity by a person in a position of trust; two counts of engaging in sexual activity with a child by a person in a position of trust. It is alleged that Drury encouraged the girl and boy to have sex in the back of his car as he drove them home from his house.

Drury, who has denied any wrong-doing, claims they did it of their own accord and he was too embarrassed to stop them.

He is also accused of locking himself in the school drama studio with them, dimming the lights and drawing the curtains in a failed bid to persuade them to have sex on the stage.

Drury claims the teenage couple wanted to do it and he was trying to give them privacy.

He is also alleged to have kissed the girl’s neck and ears, touched her breasts and convinced her to remove her bra.

He denies any sexual contact with her except for one “stage kiss” in a play rehearsal for a love scene.

He claims asking her to remove her bra was also purely theatrical, to create sexual tension for the audience.

Drury took photos of her bra-less, but wearing a vest, which he claimed was to take to the head of the drama department to see if it was acceptable on stage.

A close-up shot of the girl’s chest was found on his laptop, along with pictures of two other schoolgirls in their underwear.

When the student who found them confronted him, he told her: “You like boys and I like girls,” and warned her he would lose his job if she told anyone, the court heard.

But she reported him, and he was arrested in September 2008 and charged last year.

Drury’s trial was earlier told how he had been warned twice by his superiors at school about his “over-familiar” behaviour towards pupils, including sending a girl a Valentine’s card and giving pupils lifts home.

Drury, a married dad and member of Halifax Wine Circle, told the court he regretted allowing his pupils to become friends but denied any criminality.

Jurors are expected to reach a verdict on the other charges tomorrow.