Former Leeds and Halifax rugby league player Graham Holroyd has gone on trial accused of sexual offences dating back more than 20 years.
The 38-year-old, who now lives in Manchester, has denied five charges of indecent assault and one of rape relating to alleged offences against a boy and girl when Holroyd himself was aged between 11 and 15.
Prosecutor Richard Gioserano told a jury at Bradford Crown Court yesterday that the allegations only came to light in January of last year, after one of the complainants told a counsellor that he had been sexually abused as a child.
Mr Gioserano said the man was effectively “breaking over 20 years of silence” and his allegations were reported to the police.
The second complainant, who alleges that she was indecently assaulted and raped by Holroyd, also contacted the police.
“The prosecution case against this defendant now is that all those years ago when of course he himself was still very young, albeit older than the complainants, he subjected them, the prosecution say, to a number to a number of sexual acts,” said Mr Gioserano.
Following the opening of the case by Mr Gioserano the proceedings degenerated into farce as by the jury had been due to watch a DVD of the video-recorded interview given to the police by the male complainant.
However technical problems meant the Recorder of Bradford, Judge Roger Thomas QC, had to apologise to the jury and the trial was adjourned until today.
Holroyd played for Leeds for five years in the mid-1990s, playing in both the 1994 and 1995 Challenge Cup finals at Wembley Stadium at scrum half.
He also contested the 1998 Super League Grand Final loss to Wigan.