Oldest British Legal History Defendant Denies Child Sex Offences

Accused with 17 indecent assaults, 12 offences of indecency with a child and two attempted sexual offences in 1974 and 1983, 101-years-old Ralph Clarke pleads not guilty to the charges before him.

About 31 offences dating back 40 years involved children aged between four and 13 years old in 1974 and 1983. The court heard from the prosecution that the offences happened in his garage, workshop and in his lorry cab.

A former lorry driver from Birmingham, the old man had found trouble hearing the court despite having fresh batteries in his hearing aid.

He was told that he will have renewed bail until trial and is unconditional. But his failure to attend court would mean his absence permits the hearing without his representation.

The trial date for Ralph Clarke was set for December 5 and may last two weeks.