Abuse victim was given Halifax RL shirt “not to tell”

Graham Holroyd
Graham Holroyd

A jury has heard claims that former RL star Graham Holroyd gave a Halifax shirt to an alleged abuse victim so he would not tell anyone.

The complainant, who is now in his 30s, made the claim in a video-recorded interview he gave to police more than a year ago after he decided to report his allegations against the former Leeds and Halifax player.

Holroyd, 38, has denied allegations of indecent assault and rape which are said to have been committed against a boy and a girl in the late 1980s and early 1990s.

The male complainant, who cannot be identified for legal reasons, was sat in court as the jury was today shown the video interview in which he outlined his allegations.

He claimed that when he was only six or seven years old Holroyd, who himself would have been about nine, pinned him down and stuck his tongue in his mouth.

The man, who described his own childhood as ‘’a tough upbringing’’, said he didn’t understand what was happening and felt sick now when he looked back on it.

He alleged that Holroyd seemed to be ‘’getting pleasure’’ out of the incidents which could have happened up to 20 times.

The complainant alleged that things moved on to incidents were Holroyd would be ‘’gyrating’’ on top of him when they were both fully clothed, but he claimed that the defendant then had anal sex with him.

The man, who would have been about nine years old, alleged that he passed out for a couple of seconds due to the pain.

The complainant said Holroyd, who was then about 11, spoke about wanting to ‘’get that feeling’’, but he didn’t understand what it was.

‘’I just remember pulling my pyjama bottoms up, not crying, just wondering what the hell was going on. I just didn’t know what was happening,’’ he told the interviewing officer.

The complainant said he felt ‘’a burning sensation’’ and when he told Holroyd he was ‘’telling’’ he was given a Halifax rugby shirt and possibly some shin-pads or some boots.

‘’He said don’t say owt. I’ll give you this stuff,’’ alleged the complainant.

The man said he pushed that incident to the back of his mind because his life was hard enough, but he also alleged that on a later occasion Holroyd put his penis into the complainant’s mouth.

During his police interview the complainant described Holroyd as being ‘’calculating’’ and testing to see how far he could go.

The man said he felt like he was being treated like ‘’a piece of meat’’ and he didn’t think anyone would believe him because Holroyd was sort of ‘’the golden boy’’.

Bradford Crown Court has heard that the man contacted police in January last year after revealing his allegations of sexual abuse to a counsellor.

Holroyd has pleaded not guilty in relation to two charges of indecent assault concerning the male complainant.

He has also denied three further allegations of indecent assault and one of rape relating to the female complainant.

The trial continues.