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Latest development in ongoing Civil Action against Manchester City FC – Barry Bennell to give evidence

Convicted paedophile Barry Bennell, is to give evidence for the first time, in the ongoing trial against Manchester City FC. James Counsell QC and Ben Bradley continue to act in this ongoing trial for eight victims.

On Tuesday 30 November, Manchester City FC will open its case, relying on evidence from the perpetrator himself, Barry Bennell.

Bennell is serving a 34-year prison sentence for around 90 separate sexual offences perpetrated against children. Bennell is likely to say that he played no part in Manchester City FC’s youth operations. The case will be the first time that Bennell has ever given live evidence about the circumstances surrounding his crimes; having elected not to give evidence (despite, at times, entering not guilty pleas) in the criminal trials that led to his convictions.

The 7-week trial, listed before Johnson J, will run until mid-December 2021. For more details on the trial, read our previously published article here:


The case has attracted significant press interest. See, for example:

Manchester City’s legal defence relies on testimony of Barry Bennell – ‘one of Britain’s most notorious paedophiles’ (The Times)

Barry Bennell: Paedophile football coach ‘wore Man City kit’ (BBC News)

Paedophile Barry Bennell ‘quite clearly’ had a Manchester City role and ‘everyone knew him’ (Daily Mail)

Find out more

James Counsell QC specialises in acting for victims of non-recent sexual abuse, having recently acted as lead counsel in two successful claims against the Jehovah’s Witness organisation. He currently represents numerous claimants in cases against football clubs and other sporting bodies, religious and educational organisations and the Scout Association. He has been invited to speak and publish papers on this topic.

Ben Bradley is a leading personal injury and clinical negligence junior who regularly acts for victims of non-recent child abuse; appearing with James in a number of the cases referred to above. He specialises in cases where individuals have suffered life-changing injuries.

To find out more, contact Graham Woods on +44 (0)20 7427 4902 or Paul Barton on +44 (0)207 427 4907 for a confidential discussion on James and Ben’s work in this specialist area of personal injury law.

News 29 Nov, 2021


James Counsell KC

Call: 1984 Silk: 2017

Ben Bradley

Call: 2007

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