Footballers crown court trial starts
AFC Bournemouth defender Steve Cook and three Brighton and Hove Albion footballers have appeared in court.
They have all pleaded not guilty, after being accused of sexual assault and voyeurism for an alleged offence that happened in July 2011.
Steve Cook, Tommy Elphick, Anton Rodgers, Lewis Dunk, George Barker and Ben Sampayo were all arrested in January 2012 on suspicion of sexually assaulting a woman at the Jury's Inn Hotel in Brighton in July 2011.
Steve Cook and Tommy Elphick went on to leave Brighton for AFC Bournemouth. Cook joined the Cherries in October that year, whilst Elphick made the move in October 2012.
All the men were originally released on bail until 21st March 2012, pending further inquiries by officers.
Cherries stand in captain Tommy Elphick was later eliminated from the investigation but on 21st March 2012, Cook along with the four remaining Brighton players were re-bailed until 16th May 2012 while investigations continued.
On 30th April 2012 Ben Sampayo was told no further action would be taken against him, however Cook, Rodgers, Dunk and Barker were charged and appeared at Brighton Magistrates' Court on 11th May 2012.
All four men indicated pleas of not guilty to both charges and all four were granted conditional bail to return to the same court on 6th July.
On that date, Cook and his former team mates were informed that they would return to Court on 3rd August 2012, where they were informed of when their trial would begin.
All four defendants were granted bail by the judge and the trial which began yesterday (21st January 2013) at the Old Bailey, is expected to last three weeks.
For updates from the court case, please follow:
Daily Echo - Live Updates
The Argus - Live Updates
courtnewsuk.co.uk - Twitter
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