Sunderland pensioner admits sex assault on man

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A PENSIONER has admitted sexually assaulting another man.

Wearsider Edward Charlton tried to cuddle and kiss his victim during the incident.

When he appeared at Newcastle Crown Court, the 72-year-old, of Edward Burdis Street, Southwick, pleaded guilty to a charge of sexual assault.

The court heard the victim reported his ordeal to the police, but had not been willing to give evidence in court.

However, the prosecution was able to proceed because what happened was witnessed by someone else, who would have been willing to testify.

Peter Shofield, mitigating, told the court: “The basis of plea is that the defendant attempted to cuddle the male victim and kiss him.

“The alleged victim of this assault declined to give evidence to support the prosecution.

“He made a statement but did not wish to give evidence.

“The crown’s case depends upon a witness.”

The incident happened in South Tyneside on March 22.

Charlton, will be sentenced next month and has been given conditional bail in the meantime.

Mr Justice Eder told him: “What the sentence will be I do not know, but all options are open for that judge.”

Charlton was ordered to sign the sex offenders’ register before he left the court building.

The length of time he must continue to sign it will be determined by the sentence he receives.