England

Adam Johnson trial: Footballer 'asked girl to send naked picture'

Footballer Adam Johnson Image copyright Getty Images
Image caption The England winger was arrested in March last year

England footballer Adam Johnson asked a girl for a naked picture and offered to meet her for money, a court has heard.

The claim was made by the best friend of the girl at the centre of the case.

Giving evidence via video-link, the teenager told Bradford Crown Court that her friend had said the ex-Sunderland footballer made the request on the social media app Snapchat.

Mr Johnson, 28, who has 12 England caps, denies two counts of sexual activity with a child.

The teenager told the jury: "She (her friend) said that they talked on Snapchat and he'd asked her to send a naked picture and that's all I can remember about it."

The witness said this after she was asked by Kate Blackwell QC, prosecuting, to tell the court about further details concerning the case she had revealed to police last week.

The teenager described how she informed officers that her friend had told her about more serious sexual activity that her friend had not told police about previously.

"She told me not to say anything," the teenager told the court.

"She told me that she'd been texting him before she went away and he offered to meet her for money," the teenager said.

'Get your pants off'

Earlier the court was played a video-recorded police interview with the teenager, in which she described how her best friend was "excited" after having a sexual encounter with the footballer.

She described how she was with her friend before she went to meet Mr Johnson in his Range Rover.

The teenager said she met her friend again after the girl, then aged 15, got out of the winger's car in January 2015.

She told the officer interviewing her that her friend was "more excited - not excited for something, just excited - in a good mood, really".

The teenager said: "I asked her if anything had happened as I'd seen messages before asking for a bit of a feel."

She then explained how her friend described a sex act that had allegedly taken place between her and the footballer.

Image copyright PA
Image caption Mr Johnson began his career at Middlesbrough before moving to Manchester City and then on to Sunderland for £10m in 2012

"She seemed excited about it at first but she started to realise what she'd done because he had a girlfriend," she said.

In the police interview, the teenager described how, at first, she did not believe her best friend "because he's a footballer, he's famous and she's only 15".

But she then said she changed her mind after a seeing a message Mr Johnson had sent to her friend which said: "Just wanted to get your pants off."

The girl told the officer: "That's why I know something had happened between them for definite."

Born in Sunderland, Mr Johnson began his career at Middlesbrough before moving to Manchester City and then on to Sunderland for £10m in 2012.

The trial continues.

The footballer has previously pleaded guilty to one count of sexual activity with a child and one charge of grooming. He was sacked by Sunderland as a result.

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